On this year's Day of the African Child, we reflect the impact of Worls Vision's Child Friendly Spaces on children. We appreciate the role that such centres have played in providing a platform for children to improve their literacy skills, engage with their peers among other things.
9-year-old Rami enjoys coming to al Radeef Child Friendly Space (CFS), run by World Vision because he meets many friends to play with. "I love the centre because I find rare toys here," Rami says. Rami's mother, 38-year-old Fatima believes that the centre has helped shape her son's behaviour.
At the CFS, children have access to a variety of indoor and outdoor play materials such as dolls, board games, letter puzzles, soccer balls, and skipping ropes. The wide array of activities are carefully designed to improve the children’s psychosocial well-being including their morale and positive attitude.
For 10-year-old Dar al Salam, joining the Child Friendly Space in al Radeef is a good opportunity to preparing to go to Basic School.
The third of five siblings, hopes to join Basic School soon so that she can get started on fulfilling her dreams of becoming a doctor someday. She is also good at painting. Her mother, 46-year-old Dahia thinks the Child Friendly Space is helping her daughter learn new things as well as spend time with children her age.
"When the social workers explained to me the activities that the children will be involved in at the centre, I immediately knew it was good for my daughter to join the centre. I had no doubt that my daughter would be in good hands with people who are trained on children issues and how to handle them," Dahia says.
Dar al Salam loves skipping rope. When she is not learning to read and write, she spends her time playing or simply chatting with her best friend Hanan.
"I have observed that when she comes back from the centre, Dar al Salam rests a little, helps me with some household chores and settles down to continue practicing reading and writing," Dahia says, pointing out that before joining the centre her daughter used to stay idle.
Lastly meet, 10-year-old Zeinab. At the centre, you will mostly find Zeinab playing with her eight-year-old best friend Nadia. “I like to hang out and play with Nadia because she is a nice girl," Zeinab notes.
She no doubt enjoys coming to the centre. This is because she meets many children to play with. These children have in-turn become her friends. “We play different games like skipping rope, which I enjoy very much," she says.
Ever since my little girl started spending time at the CFS I have noticed her desire for reading writing grow, so is her self confidence,” Salma, Zeinab's mother says, with a look of content.
At the CFS, children are also exposed to activities carefully designed to improve their writing, reading and numeracy skills through simplified, attractive educational approaches.
"I think World Vision is doing a wonderful job by establishing such a centre that gives Dar al Salam and other children a place to play and learn. Watching my child doing her homework every day not only gives me great joy but it also gives me confidence that my daughter will grow up well," Dahia says.
Gamal Ghallab, WV Sudan Communications Officer & Hafiz Abdalla, WV Sudan monitoring and evaluation officer-Blue Nile state programme, contributed to this feature story.
Learn more about how World Vision's education programmes are contributing to improved futures for the children in Sudan.