At PathFinders we believe every child deserves a fair start in life. Founded in 2008 on the principle that no child should be born alone, undocumented and unprotected, for almost a decade our emergency shelter has been instrumental in ensuring a safe and nurturing environment for the children and mothers we support.
Since 2011, we have provided emergency shelter to 322 babies and mothers when they were at their most vulnerable and had nowehere else to go. Before coming to us, they may have been living on a beach, in a park, on a friend’s sofa or even at a brothel.
There are a few shelters in Hong Kong that welcome foreign domestic workers, but PathFinders’ Shelter is the only shelter set up for pregnant women, mothers and babies. We do not use bunk beds to avoid the risk of falls, provide baby cribs for safe sleeping and when babies cry in the night, other shelter residents are accommodating and understanding. We also provide a kitchen and food coupons to allow mothers to cook the food they crave, warm baby bottles and introduce solid foods to their babies.
Being a new mother is hard, particularly for those who are on their own and so far from home. With regular visits from our Case Managers, our shelter is especially critical for mothers considering adoption or those who have been physically or sexually abused. These particularly sensitive cases require extra care, and an environment free from judgment and prejudice.
Our emergency shelter is not just a safe place to stay, but also a stepping stone towards stability. Our Shelter Manager helps residents establish goals to improve their lives for the long-term. Our Case Managers provide individualised care and counselling to rehabilitate residents and help them find a path to a stable and bright future for their children. Our Healthcare Team also visit to provide check-ups and give advice on important topics such as postnatal depression, breastfeeding, hygiene and immunisations.
Without PathFinders’ Shelter, the health and safety of these babies and their morthers would have been in jeopardy, and their futures at risk.
Now, more than ever, homeless babies and mothers need your support – if you are able to, please help us to Save our Shelter by making a donation to our SparkRaise campaign – see here for more details!