Special Hope Network
SHN is a faith-based, non-governmental organization working to care for children with intellectual disabilities in Lusaka, Zambia. SHN works to train parents and caregivers to provide their children with healthcare, nutritional supplements, exceptional education and therapies. SHN was founded as a U.S. 501c3 nonprofit in 2008, and incorporated in Zambia in 2010, and has been steadily growing since then.
SHN has developed an innovative parent-training model of the Community Care Center (CCC) for children with ID. The CCCs are located in high density, high poverty compounds in Lusaka, within walking-distance of children’s homes, and are staffed by SHN-trained Zambian nationals. Currently the two CCCs serve over 130 children with 24 hours per month of programming. SHN is now working to add one new CCC in the next two months.
This year, Special Hope Network was one of 6 organizations to be chosen for an Open:IDEO grant through DFID, and through this grant, will be utilizing local clinics to identify children at younger ages so that fewer die before they turn 5. You see, in the developing world, and specifically in Zambia, 4 out of 5 kids with ID die before their 5th birthday.
Lastly, in order to increase organizational sustainability, and fill a significant gap in the private sector, SHN offers private education and therapies to children with disabilities and their families for a cost. At the Resource Center, SHN provides daily services for more than 40 children with ID.
SHN is growing, and is looking to move forward to increase community impact.