Over the last 15 years, Tata, and Yanti have been focused on one thing in their work: keeping families together when it’s safe to do so. But their jobs, along with the rest of the team at Save the Children Indonesia, have been made immeasurably difficult with the COVID-19 pandemic.

This incredible journey heavily supported by my mum has taught me a lot about working internationally. I have attended several meetings with other delegates and have also been put into working groups to develop proposals we will be presenting to Ministers attending the Pre-COP26.

There are thousands of children that have become separated from their families due to COVID.

Jony Doe

In 2007, two years after the Families First program started, about 500,000 children were living in more than 8,000 childcare institutions, the highest number in the world. In 2019, that number was only 100,000. Many of the reasons children are living in institutions, despite having parents or extended family to care for them, can be addressed, says Tata.

Keeping children and parents together

Often parents believe that they can’t afford to keep and educate their children. They desperately want their children to have a good education and believe these institutions can offer that. But education in some of these institutions isn’t guaranteed, and abuse and neglect are common.

This is the way to be independent – providing families the opportunity to keep the kids with them and ensuring their basic needs can be fulfilled – love, attachment, food, education, a house.

It’s never been a more important time to get involved

Sometimes I feel disheartened and hopeless, as I hear how politicians continue to advocate for continuing with coal, but my Jewish background reminds me to never give up the fight. I stand up for others because I know there were people who protected my family. 

The first-ever protest I attended was the School Strike 4 Climate Global Day of Action on November 30, 2018. I had never been to a protest before. The feeling of being surrounded by passionate young people was one I will never forget. From then on, I was all in.

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