Improving Access to Human Rights
Voice strives to recognise and listen to people in crisis, assist them to access food, shelter, healthcare, education, safety, employment, and to develop individualised solutions to help get them out of crisis. Read some examples of how we have assisted people to access their fundamental human rights.
ACCESS TO EDUCATION
In Cambodia, formal records are kept in a family's homeland commune. If parents don’t have proper documentation for their children, they can’t re-register them for school in the event that they relocate. This rigorous process dissuades families from sending their kids to school. Such was the case for the Lee family who had just moved from the provinces for a new job in the city. With a salary of $5/day, the family couldn’t afford to spend money traveling back to their home province to get the documents. Voice staff worked with the school to ensure these four kids wouldn't be denied an education. After providing certificates of affiliation with VOICE, supplying uniforms and school supplies, and enrolling the children in our Children's Project for transportation and lunch each day, their first day of school finally arrived.
ACCESS TO FOOD
Each day at VOICE, children pile in to enjoy lunch together. Every few days, a new child will wander in with a friend looking for a warm meal. This is how we me Piset. His father has a disability that limits his work options and his mother works long hours as a cleaner to pay for their $40/month rent. Piset and his two siblings hadn’t been eating every day due to their family’s low income. Voice enrolled the kids in the Children’s Project. Now Piset and his siblings have access to daily meals. Providing lunch to the kids helps decrease the financial burden on the family. Voice then works with the parents to find ways to increase their income and help them to be self-sustainable.
ACCESS TO SAFETY AND SHELTER
Solytha came to the Voice community centre with her 3-year-old son, Hou, looking for a job after the restaurant she worked at suddenly closed. Voice staff became immediately aware of a greater issue at hand due to bruises on her face – Solytha was also a victim of domestic violence. Solytha was running from her husband after he had beaten her again. Her rent was due, she had no savings, she had no employment, and she was scared that her husband would find her. Solytha and Hou took shelter at the Voice community centre in order to regain stability. Solytha said that staying here made her feel safe. Voice staff began to counsel Solytha and discuss the future with her. Voice also offered Solytha a temporary position as a house mother. After a few months, Voice helped her to find alternative employment and a safe living environment within the community. She asked Voice for assistance in making a formal complaint to the police about her husband and to file for a divorce. The staff accompanied her to the police, and are currently helping her through the upcoming legal proceedings. Voice continues to monitor Solytha and Hou’s family situation. Solytha is now self-sustainable as she is happily employed, renting her own home, and supporting herself and Hou.
ACCESS TO SAFE EMPLOYMENT
Sivly showed up at the Voice community centre looking to enrol her two kids in the Children’s Program. Sivly was having trouble covering the costs of food and rent for her family and so she had just moved them all into a smaller house than their previous tiny home in order to afford the rent. Voice staff immediately noticed her positive attitude and commitment to bettering her children’s futures. When Sivly came to Voice looking for work, staff were able provide a full recommendation for her to begin a job at Coco Khmer, one of Voice’s social enterprise partners which offers a fare-wage work environment making coconut oil products. Quickly, Sivly showed her ability to work hard and with accuracy. Now, only six months into her employment, she has been promoted to a managerial role and is the sole provider for her family. Voice has helped many women like Sivly attain safe working environments, proving that with the right opportunity, people have the power to change their own lives.
ACCESS TO HEALTHCARE
While completing annual check-ins for outreach kids in the Voice Children’s Program, Voice staff identified that Phal, age 11, looked to have an infection on his face. His father told us that he didn’t have the money to bring his son into the children’s hospital in the city. Voice staff scheduled time the following day to assist Phal and his father to travel to the city for medical attention. After seeing two doctors and having many blood tests, Phal was diagnosed with Malaria. Since skin disorders are an uncommon symptom of Malaria, if was more difficult for the doctors to immediately identify the problem. If not treated, Malaria can cause serious health problems including death. Phal was given five different types of medicines to treat the Malaria. Without financial assistance from Voice, Phal’s father would not have been able to afford the proper medical attention for his son. Phal is now sleeping under a bed net and his follow up appointment is scheduled with the doctor.