Family Under Pressure in Asia
Little Yu is 8 years old. Already he is thinking about getting into university. His parents tell him if he doesn't do his homework well, he will not pass his entrance exams. Then he won't get a good job, and he'll be a disgrace to his family. His parents work long hours, struggling to get ahead, and in the process, they ignore each other's needs. Xiao Chen, Yu's mother, is wondering whether she made a mistake when she married Yu's father. Divorce is an easy and tempting option.
The family is losing the central role it once had in Asian culture. The divorce rate is rapidly increasing, along with the number of single parent families, unwanted pregnancies, and couples living together out of wedlock.
Children face the challenge of high expectations coupled with every indulgence offered to them by their parents and grandparents. There is little opportunity for play, learning life skills and independence, and discovering how to make healthy choices.
The Lighthouse Centre: A Place of Hope
The Lighthouse Centre seeks to be a beacon of light by promoting healthy families. Located in an ethnically diverse section of an Asian city, the Centre will be a source of information and training available to the majority population and ethnic minorities. By building strong relationships, the staff hopes to make a positive impact on the community.
The centerpiece of the Lighthouse will be the children's library and its library programmes. There will also be an adult resource area with books on family issues. Adults will have the opportunity to take classes on parenting, interpersonal skills, and preparing for marriage. All of the Lighthouse activities will promote the physical, emotional, social, educational, and spiritual well-being of families.
Phase I included finding and renovating a suitable building in 2006, recruiting and training staff in early 2007, and opening by March 2007. Once the Centre has been running for two years, Phase II will expand the services to include English Classes and Teacher Training. These classes will generate income, paving the way towards financial sustainability.
An Investment in Asian Families
Children like Yu will benefit from the Lighthouse. There, he will be welcomed by caring staff as he delves into children's story books. His mother and father will receive counsel and encouragement to strengthen their marriage and their parenting skills.
Would you consider investing in the future of Asia's children and marriages?