Girls at Risk – Impacting the lives of children affected by violence and abuse

Balay Banaag – “House of Hope” is a ‘safe place’ for girls at risk. The Centre provides shelter, support, education and an opportunity to break the cycle of poverty for ‘at risk behaviours and abuse of girls’. These young girls come from families at risk and are very vulnerable to exploitation and abuse. Balay Banaag offers these girls a future with dignity, hope and independence.

Balay Banaag is located in Davao City and has been in operation since 2010. The Marist Sisters took over the management of the centre in 2018. Balay Banaag is a residential centre that provides care and support for the female children at risk. There are currently ten girls in the care of Balay Banaag aged between 6 and 18 years old. Most of the children do not know who their father is and many have suffered physical and emotional abuse because of their upbringing.

Balay Banaag undertakes five key activities that contribute to strengthen the rights and future of the female children of prostitutes:

1.      Facilitate formal elementary and high school education for the Balay Banaag children

2.      Provide psychosocial counselling and values formation for the Balay Banaag children

3.      Conduct skills training for the Balay Banaag and community children

4.      Conduct parenting classrooms in the community

5.      Collaborate with government agencies, schools and other organisations for resource mobilization