Thursday, March 4, 2010

The Center appeals for a laptop

This photo and below, Hayward Sagembo, TCC chairman, interviews the kids as part of the ardous task of profiling them.

Penny Sagembo, The Center's founder and coordinator, lectures the kids on the importance of washing hands regularly with soap and water during last Saturday's especial feeding gig.

Volunteer moms are busy with pots and dishes just before the especial lunch meal of Masala-chicken soup is served to the kids during last Saturday's feeding session. The meal was sponsored by RY Hypermart General Manager CC Ang and his family.

The Center, where all good things are taking place for the 83 orphans and abandoned children. It is here where half of them are getting their first taste of education as pre-schoolers. Also, this is where lunch food is available for them four times a week, without fail. - All pictures by ALFREDO P HERNANDEZ, A Friend of Tembari Children Center (TCC) Inc.

FROM HEREON, I would refer to Tembari Children Care (TCC) Inc as “The Center” in this blog and the ones coming after.


THE GROWING number of orphans joining The Center could mean a lot of things.

One of them could be that their parents had been sick but did not have access to basic healthcare.

Illnesses such as cholera, malaria, HIV/AIDS, heart and lung diseases are very curable these days.

Sadly, however, thousands across the Papua New Guinea are still deprived of medical attention that could save their lives, one way or the other.

Many of them died before reaching mid-life.

Or maybe that the departed parents died from violence, an occurrence which is common place in this country, where tribal wars and occasional murders have become a staple of village’s violent life.

With many men keeping two or thee spare wives at home, the increase in the extended household’s membership is a matter of course.

It goes without saying that they would be leaving behind several children – orphans, in short -- by their poor helpless wives the moment they vanished from the face of the earth for good.

About two weeks ago, two parents who turned out to be guardians, or custodians, of five brand-new orphans came to The Center to register their wards.

So, from the 78 that The Center is caring for, the number of orphans as well as abandoned kinds under its care has risen to 83.

But before new entrants could be officially counted as members of The Center, and thus receive benefits in one way or the other, they have to be profiled individually.

Also, every funding entity always requires care groups seeking money to present a comprehensive history of every child under their care.

Considering these, it will be a lot more efficient and easier if the document is computer-processed, and not typewritten or handwritten, which is what founders could afford to do so far.

And at the moment, The Center’s lack of properly prepared children’s profile is handicapping it in its bid to seek financial help.

It is due to this handicap that the Center has missed out on a potential funding grant a number of times.

So far, only WeCare! PNG and Pacific Towing Ltd have bothered to provide a grant of K400 a month to subsidize the food needs of the children.

Profiling 83 kids and updating such on a regular basis could be a hell of a job, considering we do not have a computer. On top of profiling, keeping the records of each and every beneficiary and keeping it updated all the times is even bigger task.

It is for these reasons that we are appealing for a lap top for use at the Center. A PC would not be practical for the Center as there is no electricity at ATS Oro Settlement at 7 Mile, on the other side of the Jackson airport, where the TCC Center is located

The power lines stopped a kilometer or so from the TCC Center at the heart of the settlement. And their prospects of getting energized remains to be seen.

It is also here where The Center operates its pre-school for some 45 toddlers, part of the 83 kids being cared for. The other half of the ward is attending 16 schools in different levels in Port Moresby. At noon after classes, they home in to The Center for whatever food is available at the soup kitchen.

A laptop will be very handy to carry around and could easily be recharged where there is a power outlet.

At night, Co-Founder Penny could work the records of each and individual child even in candlelight or kerosene lamp. All she needs to do is tap it out on the keyboard whatever profile item she needs to build or update despite the dark.

The next day, she could recharge at her workplace at the Boroko-based NGO Save the Children, Inc where she works as sexual health care counselor.

We hope that this wish to get a laptop may become a reality because somewhere out there, someone might have a laptop which he no longer uses after upgrading to the latest model. And he may be willing to donate this item to The Center to help it accomplish things that would better serve the kids.

A refurbished, no-longer-used-but-still-efficiently-working laptop is all TCC needs.

Many such laptops may be gathering dust in the corner somewhere. It is just needed to be re-commissioned for more worthy undertakings.

In case anyone would like to assist The Center through a laptop donation, please contact us.

We wish you all a pleasant working day.

1 comment:

  1. Alfred,

    Great reporting. It really touches the core of my heart. I salute the volunteers for doing a fantastic job.

    I know that God is going to bless their tireless efforts. I do have a used laptop that I would like to donate. Just check your email.


    David Ulg Ketepa