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AfricaMoney | May 19, 2015

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Mauritius: SOS village undertakes various activities to mark International Family Day

Mauritius: SOS village undertakes various activities to mark International Family Day

To celebrate International Family Day 2015 on 15 May, strengthening family bonds is the main program of the SOS children’s village in Mauritius, together with other activities to underline the importance of the family as being a crucial element in a child’s evolution. (Image:Magna Carta)

To mark International Family Day 2015, which falls on 15 May,the SOS village in Mauritius aims at taking on the responsibility of children without parental support, or those in risk of losing their parents, which is indeed already a committed initiative of the SOS children’s villages in Mauritius.

“Family is the essence of the existence of an SOS children’s village, whether it is located in Mauritius or elsewhere in the world. It is this spirit that means a lot to the association as it celebrates International Family Day through several activities in 2015,”underlines Amédée Dabeecharun, the director of SOS children’s villages in Mauritius.

The day will be marked by a series of activities organised to mark the occasion and underline the importance of the family within Mauritian society.

“Our children will go to meet families of the region of Beau Bassin and Bambous, so that they can approach a family unit and share the enjoyment that accompanies being part of a family. Our partner sponsors will be also invited to join us in villages so that they can share family moments with us,”adds Amédée Dabeecharun.

Centered around the family axis, the SOS children’s villages were set up in 2004.‘Family Strengthening’ is a preventive measure that forms part of various programs and initiatives  developed by the SOS Village.

‘Family Strengthening’, as its name indicates,looks into the underlying causes of negligence and abandonment of children.By empowering families, parents can take care of their children the right way, because indeed it is the family which comes first, and it is the most important element comprising the social background—the grown-up’s quality of life depends largely on the quality of relations enjoyed in the past with his/her family.

International Family Day is the perfect opportunity to highlight the Family Strengthening initiative, which has helped Mauritian families to create a convenient environment for the evolution of the children, over many years now.

On 13 May 15, more than 838 children were able to benefit from this support. Virginia Virassamy and her family confided that “there are many things which changed in our life at that point of time.”

“I realised that it was necessary that I go to work to help my husband in order to meet our family needs, as alone, he would not have been able to assume all the responsibility, even with a full-time job.”

It is with much hope and emotion that Virginia explains that she wishes the best for her children and stresses that “I dream of attending Alison’s graduation ceremony.”

On September 20th, 1993, the UN General Assembly decided that May 15th of every year would be celebrated asInternational Family Day (resolution 47/237). This day provides a golden opportunity to familiarise the general public with questions pertaining to the family— as well as the social, economic and demographic processes which affect families.

The theme for 2015 is “Men in charge? Gender equality and rights of the children within contemporary families.”International Family Day 2015 has for its objective the promotion of gender equality and the rights of children within families. It will also highlight the prevention of domestic violence through the legal framework surrounding the family, as well as a set of programs of interventions.

Finally,“My family, my responsibility” is the theme chosen for Mauritius this year by the Ministry of Gender Equality, Child Development and Family Welfare,with the main objective of sensitising Mauritian families on their responsibilities.

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