One Life Fund
Support Children in Out-of-Home Care in Singapore
World Vision's One Life Fund is our commitment to stand in the gap for vulnerable children in Singapore.
From 2023, our featured project under this fund aims to support children in out-of-home care with special learning needs.
In Singapore, children below 18 years old can be removed from their natural families as a last resort for reasons that put their safety and well-being at risk, such as abuse, abandonment, neglect, or the loss or incarceration of parents. These children are then placed temporarily in out-of-home care, where they can be looked after in a safe environment (such as a foster family or a children’s home), until they can be safely reunified with their natural families.
Among these children in out-of-home care, there is an even more vulnerable group who have been identified as having special learning needs, both:
- Children who have been formally diagnosed with developmental conditions (such as Dyslexia, Dyscalculia, and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), and
- Children who have not yet been formally diagnosed with developmental conditions, but who have been assessed by professionals in their circle of care to be exhibiting the traits of learning and development delays.
Many of these children attend mainstream schools as they do not meet the threshold for admission to special education schools, but they lack basic academic skills, have a limited capacity for learning, and are often burdened with behavioural and psychological co-morbidities, which resulted from previous trauma and impair their learning further. Their weaknesses in literacy and/or numeracy affect their performance in all their subjects, and they fall drastically behind their peers.
Because they are underperforming profoundly and need specialised attention to help them manage their own behavioural and psychological challenges, mainstream tuition is not helpful to them. Hence, there is a need for specialised learning support programmes (LSPs) for these children to cope with the demands of formal education in a manner that is sensitive to their learning and behavioural difficulties. However, the cost of enrolling and sustaining these children on LSPs can be a source of financial strain for their caregivers in out-of-home care.
World Vision aims to:
We are committed to stand in the gap to enable children in out-of-home care with special learning needs to have access to specialised LSPs. Intervening in learning difficulties and strengthening the psychological reserves of these children from a young age will be critical to forestalling educational disengagement and associated social issues such as delinquency, and to ensuring that the gains from these interventions are sustained for the long term after the children graduate from them.
World Vision Singapore will work in partnership with agencies in the out-of-home care sector and accredited LSP providers to implement this project. We will cover the LSP fees of children in out-of-home care who are identified as needing specialised learning support, as well as the cost of learning needs assessment prior to enrolment and related transport costs for children in residential care, where needed.
Target beneficiaries annually:
- Direct (children in out-of-home care attending LSPs): at least 20