We supported 310,000 children in ten countries. We created Child Friendly Spaces where children could play, learn and interact. We substantially expanded our emergency response activities for Syrian refugee children in Lebanon. We initiated projects in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo in communities affected by recent fighting, and we consolidated our work in Colombia to focus on the country’s most war-affected regions.
War Child works in areas affected by armed conflict. This may be during the conflict or after it has ended. In 2013 we worked in ten countries: Afghanistan, Burundi, Colombia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Lebanon, occupied Palestinian territory (oPt), South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan and Uganda.
Children tell us their lives have changed for the better. Together with children and independent experts, we monitor and evaluate our projects to better understand the outcomes and to learn and improve. You can learn more about how we measure our projects by reading the evaluation reports and updates on our website, by reading the stories of children who we follow through the year such as Kareem or Maryam or by joining chat sessions with our staff or following us on Facebook and Twitter.
Unfortunately not everything went the way we had planned. We started a project in refugee camps in Thailand at the border with Myanmar, working with refugee children and youth. Due to a drop in fundraising income during 2013 we had to make the decision to close this project. We will make sure we do this in a responsible way. We will complete the activities we had already planned, build the skills of participating youth groups and put them in touch with other agencies. This way they can continue the work we started together. We will complete the project at the end of March 2014.
Children play an active role in our programs. Here are some examples. Children evaluated our projects in the occupied Palestinian territory, in South Sudan and Colombia. They had a direct influence on the design and implementation of a new project in South Sudan. In DR Congo children were trained to collect assessment data and participated in focus groups. The children in Lebanon expressed their needs in the video message you can watch here.
War Child is an expert in the field of psychosocial support for children affected by armed conflict. Improving the social and emotional well-being of conflict-affected children is central to our approach and integrated in all our work, including our education and child protection projects. Creativity and collaboration are at the heart of everything we do.
War Child’s total income in 2013 was € 24.4 million. Of this, 84 percent was spent directly in project activities to help children. The remainder was spent on organisation, administration and fundraising. We strive to keep these support costs as low as possible so that we can use your donations to reach as many children as we can.
An important part of our income comes from our Friends - individuals in the Netherlands who believe in our work. In 2013, hundreds of enthusiastic people and organisations organised events to raise money for us. Companies, foundations, the Dutch Postcode Lottery, institutional donors, the Dutch Government and international organisations like the United Nations and the European Union also support us.
The salary of a NGO director is a popular topic of discussion. Our director, Bernard Uyttendaele, earns € 88,353 per year, well below the maximum of € 140,046 stipulated by Dutch charities body the VFI. Bernard is accountable for the quality of our projects in ten countries suffering from wars and conflict, for the safety of more than 400 employees in the field and at head office, and for maintaining a financially healthy and effective organisation. It's not an easy job.
Conflict contexts are uncertain and unstable. Information on the number of people affected changes constantly. According to the most recent available statistics from 2011, millions of children grow up in areas affected by armed conflict. Last year, this number increased by almost one million due to the Syrian conflict alone. We believe no child should be part of war. Ever.
War Child has actively responded to the Syrian crisis since early 2012. Through our team in Lebanon, we created 52 Child Friendly Spaces, reaching 63,000 Syrian children like Maryam and Kareem, who we followed online in 2013. We also facilitated a participatory Child Rights Situation Analysis (CRSA) with 400 boys and girls living in different communities in Syria to find out about the matters of greatest concern to them. This will help influence the future design of our programme interventions.
In 2013 our Ambassador Marco Borsato visited the Democratic Republic of Congo to promote our projects. Upon his return, he participated in several high-profile radio and TV programmes to generate attention for our programmes. Marco also attended the VIP premiere of the War Child Schoolmusical to show his support for the children participating and the War Child cause in the Netherlands.
Our projects run successfully thanks to the support of thousands of people who participate in our cause by generously donating money and products, offering expertise, organising initiatives and events, and spreading our message. They play a crucial role in helping us fulfill our mission.
323 employees in the field and 83 at head office in Amsterdam
40 volunteers and 19 interns at our head office
100,592 loyal Friends
Our partners in the field
Our institutional partners and donors such as the ASN Bank, T-Mobile, Microsoft, Doom & Dickson, Adessium, Turing Foundation, UNICEF, and the European Commission
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands
38 business ambassadors, 11 business partners and 110 business friends
All the companies who sponsored us by donating money or products
Our ambassadors Marco Borsato, Jetske van der Elsen, Jip Maathuis and Laura van Kaam
50 voluntary spokespeople in the Netherlands who shared our story
1,325 children who danced, sang and acted in our school musical ‘Voor kids gaat de zon op’
23,200 Facebook friends and Twitter followers
4 media partners who spread our message 100% sponsored
2.5 million participants of the Dutch Postcode Lottery