Aimed at providing long term housing solutions to children on the streets in Nicaragua, Project Open Arms makes a tangible difference in individual lives.
Some of the barriers to kids going home are poverty, addiction, mental health issues, etc. They work with a parent if the issue is extreme poverty to create a plan as to how to manage expenses and create an income, so the parents don’t send kids out to beg for money or survive on their own. They’ve supported families by providing small loans to some mothers looking to start small businesses so they don’t depend on money from the children, but if placement back in their home is unsafe (for example an abusive home), the children are connected to other services and programs that can help.
The donations from Shift go toward paying the principle outreach contact, Daniel (whose salary which is $250 a month), as well as costs for rehabs/programs for the kids, expenses for monthly parental visits (bus fares & food), and some basic necessities as they arise (can be shoes, basic clothes, tooth brush, etc). Other individual circumstances are granted funds such as a child who wants to buy a shoe shine box to make money, or paying for a haircut for one who wants to find a job. It’s very much based on individual needs.