Afternoon care for asylum seeker children
Giving children in distress the best start in life
There are approximately 42,000 refugees, asylum seekers and migrant workers living in Tel Aviv-Yafo. Half of these are asylum seekers, the majority of whom are Eritreans with some Sudanese. This includes approximately 4,400 children of asylum-seekers, the majority of whom are aged 0-6. In Israel, asylum seekers lack basic rights. As a result, the risks and dangers faced by this community as a whole – and by the weaker members in particular – are extreme.
Many parents are absent due to the need to work long hours to survive. Once children finish kindergarten or school in the early afternoon, they often return to unsafe environments. In many cases, their home environments are unsafe as they share apartments or rooms with other adults who are abusive. Other children roam the streets and are exposed to the many dangers there: drugs, traffic, etc. Only a small minority of children of asylum seekers (approximately 800 out of 5,000) have afternoon care until 6.00pm.
The Municipality of Tel Aviv-Yafo currently operates 25 afternoon care programs for children of asylum seekers. These facilities are staffed by professional educators and social workers to provide children with a safe and nurturing environment from after kindergarten or school ends until the evening. Critically, these programs help to address many of the key challenges faced by children of asylum seekers. They provide the enrichment, support and nutrition children need. However, the number of children far exceeds the number of afternoon care places available.
The Municipality is therefore seeking to expand afternoon care to an additional 1,200 kindergarten children (aged 3-6) in 35 classes and 2,045 school-aged children (in grades 1-4).
The Tel Aviv Foundation seeks a philanthropic investment towards afternoon care programs for children of asylum seekers. This requested donation is over three years to ensure continuity and consistency of care.
Requested donation (over three years) for one afternoon care facility: $100,000