Familia is a small commune that consists of four foster families. It is situated in the village of Bhaluka 55km north of Kolkata in the North 24-Parganas District of West Bengal, India. Familia is the Latin term for family. It best represents the basic aim of the organization, namely, to offer the joys and benefits of family life to children who have lost their parents and family.
Today there are 65 children (46 girls, 19 boys) living in the foster families. In addition, there are 14 children, (5 girls, 9 boys) who were in the foster families in their younger days and now stay with their relatives, continuing their education with support from Familia. Thus a total of 79 children are under Familia’s care at the moment. Everyone is closely followed up and guided..
The foster homes provide the closest alternative to a natural family for children who would otherwise never experience the joys of family life or bonding with a caring adult. (For some reason or other they are not eligible for normal adoption).
The spacious farm in which Familia is located has lots of trees to climb and fruits to raid, ponds to swim in, pet dogs, cows, buffaloes and geese, flower and vegetable gardens, a big play ground, birds chirping in the trees and squirrels scurrying about. It has proved an ideal setting to help children recover from the traumatic experiences of early childhood and start life anew.
In addition to its work with children, Familia also runs a Senior Citizens’ Home in another part of the village where up to 40 people are cared for by a dedicated team of workers. It is also engaged in a variety of outreach activities which support nearby villagers.
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