President’s Village -Staff enhance their knowledge of residential care


Delegates, facilitators and guests in a souvenir photograph

The Seychelles Children’s Foundation’s chief executive Noella Gonthier said this on Friday when staff of the village at Port Glaud received their certificate after taking part in a three-week intensive training workshop entitled ‘Construct an Institutional Project for the President’s Village’.

The certificate presentation ceremony was also attended by the principal secretary for social affairs Linda William-Melanie other senior staff of the social affairs department and the Seychelles Children’s Foundation (SCF).

Organised by the SCF, the training was conducted by Frank Underwood, a trainer in child/adolescent residential care, and Chantal Underwood, a co-facilitator of many years’ experience in social work and childcare. 

The facilitators have over 30 years experience of practice in France where they live. 

The workshop also saw the participation of facilitators from social services and the Attorney General’s office as well as that of Jean-Louis Mahé, a clinical psychologist also from France with 25 years’ practice experience.
Mr Mahé has also written several books about children in care and produced two documentary films about the same subject.

During the ceremony, Mr Underwood handed over the institutional project of the President’s Village to Mrs Gontier to which the delegates have also contributed. The document is full of observations, recommendations and solutions for a more positive and child-friendly environment. It also outlines the core competencies required by the staff as well as values, standards and procedures necessary for the acceptable level of care that should be given to the children.

During the ceremony, legendary Seychellois singer Jean-Marc Volcy dedicated a new song, written and sung by himself, to the SCF. The song pays tribute to children living in difficult circumstances and is a reflection of how parents should treat and love their children. The heart-touching song tallies well with the foundation’s motto ‘Reaching out to children today for a better tomorrow’.

Among those who attended the training were two sisters from the Foyer de Nazareth run by the Roman Catholic diocese.

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