8 MILLION
CHILDREN ARE LIVING IN INSTITUTIONS
That’s nearly the population of New York City.
That’s 2X the number of students in the 10 largest school districts in the US.
It’s nearly the population of Switzerland.
Most children in institutions will grow up without ever knowing the love of a family.

 

Why?
Deeply rooted systemic
problems including:
Lack of education
Lack of resources
Corruption
Poverty
Misguided policies
The average institution has just 1 adult caregiver for every 20 children.
What does institutional care look like?
In many institutions, children are warehoused in rooms filled with cribs that resemble cages. These precious children are left in these cribs all day long—they are not touched, comforted, or even known by name. They don’t have access to the education, therapies, or medical care they need to grow and thrive. In most cases, there is no plan for how these children will leave the institution—meaning they will never know the love of a family or what it means it be a successful, independent adult.

All of the children we serve have experienced trauma. The majority them have experienced 5-6 of the trauma risk factors.

  • Drug or alcohol exposure
  • Difficult birth
  • Early hospitalization
  • Abuse
  • Abandonment or institutionalization
  • Poverty, multiple foster homes 

Trauma affects a child’s

  • Behavior: 10 times more likely to use drugs
  • Brain: Children living in an institution have an average IQ of 20 points lower than peers who reside in a family environment
  • Body: 390% more likely to have chronic heart disease
  • Beliefs: 12 times more likely to attempt suicide
  • Biology: Unresolved trauma can be genetically passed down
On average, children living in institutions have an IQ that is 20 points lower than children raised in a family.
“Toxic stress response can occur when a child experiences strong, frequent, and/or prolonged adversity—such as physical or emotional abuse, [or] chronic neglect. . . without adequate adult support. When toxic stress response occurs continually, or is triggered by multiple sources, it can have a cumulative toll on an individual’s physical and mental health—for a lifetime. The more adverse experiences in childhood, the greater the likelihood of developmental delays and later health problems, including heart disease, diabetes, substance abuse, and depression.” —Harvard University Center on the Developing Child
Tragically, if no one intervenes, most of the children living in INSTITUTIONS WILL CONTINUE TO LIVE WITHOUT THE RESOURCES AND SUPPORT THEY NEED TO TRULY THRIVE.
The Good News
with early intervention and supportive, responsive relationships with caregivers, these negative outcomes can be prevented and reversed.
All God’s Children International is committed to intervening in the orphan crisis.