Kids With Destiny was inspired into action when Bonnie Long, President of the Buntain Foundation, met with Geralyn Dreyfous, Producer and Executive Director of the Academy award-winning documentary Born Into Brothels and Chairwoman of the Board for Kids With Cameras, to better engage disadvantaged children and children from Calcutta's red-light district.
Kids With Destiny benefits from the leadership of Bonnie Long, Dr. Stephanie Moore, physician at the Massachusetts General Hospital Heart Center and Instructor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School, Sanjay Singh, Vice President of Internal Audit for Starbucks Coffee Company, and Patrick Dey, Vice President of Information Technology at Mattel, Inc, who all work together to help disadvantaged children in India.
Kids With Destiny has been working alongside Kids With Cameras and the Buntain Foundation to plan and build a nurturing safe haven where disadvantaged children can come to live and heal as part of a holistic program. The centerpiece of the collaboration between Kids With Destiny, Kids With Cameras, and the Buntain Foundation is Hope House (Asha Niwas). Once Hope House opens, Kids With Destiny will manage the operation of Hope House, including overseeing the education, care, and development of the young women living at Hope House.
The sustainable features and aesthetic vision for Hope House were influenced by the donated services of Studio Mumbai Architects (design), Price & Myers (engineering), and Pocock Design Environment Limited (landscaping). Ground breaking and construction of Hope House is scheduled to start in 2011.
Kids With Destiny, Kids With Cameras, and the Buntain Foundation collaborated resources and experience to develop a strategic three-phase plan to benefit disadvantaged women and children living in and around Calcutta. The three restoration phases, outlined below, include physical health care, psychological care, education, mentorship, and employment opportunities to disadvantaged young women and their mothers.
Phase One - Health Clinic. Phase One is focused on making medical care accessible to the women and children living in the red-light district of Sonargachi. Providing easily accessible and affordable medical care can prevent deathly diseases from developing and spreading. In addition, offering children and their mothers a safe and secure environment where they can receive expert care allows women and children to seek medical attention without the fear of being labeled, rejected, or mistreated.
Phase Two – Opening of Hope House. Children who have the opportunity to live at Hope House will receive a top quality education and will be personally mentored by nursing students studying at the Buntain College of Nursing. Hope House artists in residence will provide artistic education that allows the students at Hope House to explore their creative abilities. Art projects will be paired with experiences in nature as Hope House will offer beautiful outdoor gardens for the girls to tend and enjoy.
Phase Three - Long Term Care. In addition to an excellent education for the young women, Hope House will provide work experience and employment opportunities for many of their mothers. A laundry facility, located on an adjacent property, will provide laundry services to local businesses. Mothers of girls living in Hope House will have the opportunity to work in the laundry facility as an alternative to working in the red-light district or other unsafe areas. As a result, these mothers will learn new and marketable employee skills while working within close proximity to their daughters.
You can get involved with the work of Hope House and help break the cycle of poverty. Your support of Hope House will make a difference in the lives of disadvantaged children and children living in the red-light district of Sonargachi. Without intervention, most of these children will continue to live in conditions like those portrayed in the documentary Born into Brothels. Take a stand for the less fortunate. Help a child today.