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Capacity building programme on sexuality: attending to a pressing need



Our capacity building efforts have brought us to address the issue of sexuality in a way that will help everyone in the organisation to have a better understanding of the subject.
In the first instance, there was a need to know more about the popular beliefs about sex and sexuality. In this respect, the participants listed a number of key words they reckon as popular beliefs. It became important for them not to limit themselves to what they themselves thought about the subject but to try to bring about what usually goes around when it pertains to sex and sexuality.

Analysis of these key words has helped us to differentiate between biological /physiological facts, identity/identification/civil status facts and social traditions such as sex discrimination, commonly held beliefs and opinions.



At the same time, an in-depth scientific insight was provided to them by Cyril Dalais as regards the development of sexuality as early as when fusion occurs between the sperm and the ovum in the mother’s womb. It became clear to everybody that sexual energy, coined the libido by Freud, is part and parcel of the human being as early as at that time. Addressing this subject means in fact, addressing a basic need of the individual at whatever age he/she might be. The other important point raised was deviance and what could have turned wrong at some time or another. Other sessions are planned on this issue.

Lastly, participants raised the question of how to answer to the pressing needs of children of all ages to get appropriate answers to their persistent questioning. The assessment was that these answers, if any, were most unsatisfactory. A collection of these questions would be carried out and brought in at other sessions for discussion.

In the meantime, it was suggested that educators would use the theme ‘My body’ to start ‘naming’ properly all the parts of the body including the sex organs of the child. A report of these actions is awaited at our next session on Friday next.

It has been decided that parents as well will be sensitised on the issue.


Reinforcement of the service delivery through
a sustainable training programme of the human resources




Three years ago, capacity building in a structured way became a real issue by our organisation. In this regard an interesting initiative was taken for a comprehensive evaluation of one of our services, namely the atelier du savoir. This initiative was in fact a breakthrough for empowering all our services. Enriched by this experience, the way forward was to look for further resources to equip all the services of the organisation with the necessary tools for them to respond to the needs of children. 
Below is the argumentation for this project which in the first benefited from the funding of Fondation Nouveau regard and then from the Fondation Joseph Lagesse.
After one year existence, a report has been carried out on all the aspects of the project. This report is now serving as the basis for yet another enthusiastic project of our organisastion: the setting up of a permanent capacity building structure at our organisation which will both sustain the work carried out up to now at our services and provide capacity building services to other agencies as well.

The project aimed at constituting a multidisciplinary team of specialists to work intensively with the members of the personnel of the organisation in both the residential and non residential settings. The team  comprised of a psychologist, a ‘educateur specialisé’ and a social worker. This programme had been planned to take place and be run over a 3 year basis.


1) With the increase in the number of recipients and the extension of the various services offered to children in distress, there is a need to reinforce and strengthen the human resources
2) So as to enable the human resources to face the increasingly complex behaviours, there is a need for them to become more professional in their approaches and acquire the right techniques to tackle problems
3) The team of specialists together with the existing personnel needs to work on appropriate guiding principles and norms
4) Taking into consideration that focus can no longer be laid on the child in isolation but on the child in the context of his biological family/parents, there is a pressing need to develop this type of resources as well.
5) As a recognised day care centre for special needs children, there is a need to upgrade the methods used



Its objectives were to:
1) Provide appropriate psychological support and other logistic support to volunteers and staff to enable them to become more efficient in their work with children
2) Equip foster families, youth leaders and “animateurs” in terms of parenting, mediation and counselling skills



Report submitted to Fondation Joseph Lagesse in January 2008 - click here