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Megan (11) ended up in a shelter: “There was always arguing and shouting at our home”

Home is often the place where someone feels safe, but that is not the case for everyone. Every year, more than 5,000 Dutch children end up in homeless or women's shelters because they have to flee an unsafe home situation. One of them is eleven-year-old Megan*

Being completely yourself, relaxing or being together with loved ones is what most people think of at home. A loving home is indispensable for a child.

Children's Stamps helps children who lack a safe place, or grow up in poverty or are lonely. We do this by linking the children to a buddy, or by organizing projects in foster care and emergency shelter.

Tense atmosphere

Megan has been living in a shelter for six months. “It was anything but nice at our house, because there was a lot of arguing and shouting. This was because of my father, because he got angry quickly and always wanted to get his way. My mother became especially angry when she tried to stand up for us. One time my father got so angry that he started throwing things. My mother, brother and I had to take shelter in the bathroom, with the door locked. Then I was very scared for a moment,” she says.

“One evening my mother said we had to leave immediately. We couldn't pack things or take clothes with us because there was no time for that. We were taken to a kind of shelter, and that's where we live now.”

Peace at last

Although Megan misses her own home, she is relieved to live in the shelter. “It is quiet here, even though many other people live there. At home I had a lot of worries, I always had a stomach ache and I often turned around in bed feeling bad. Fortunately, I don't have that anymore.”

She especially misses the animals at home. “We had chickens, a rabbit, a rat and a dog. My father didn't really love our animals, he sometimes hurt them. I don't know what happened to them.”

More and more children have major problems at home. They have parents who cannot take good care of them, grow up in poverty or feel lonely. As a result, these children end up on the sidelines – socially and socially. Kinderposttempels helps these children with a safe place where they can be themselves and participate again, at school and beyond. Would you also like to help with this? Donate here.

Daily life

Megan likes life at the shelter. “I just go to school here, I have a sweet teacher and a nice class. My brother and I often play together after school, also with the other children. My brother is much happier than he used to be, he now likes to cuddle and he often makes me laugh.”

The family has two private rooms, but they share the kitchen and bathroom with others. “You can use the kitchen in the hallway to bake something, for example. I sometimes do that together with mom. I find chocolate cake the most fun to make and the tastiest to eat. I also learn new things here. The other day we went to make toast, but we ran out of cheese. Then I was allowed to go to the store myself, down the street, to get cheese. I found that exciting, but also very fun.”

Great loss

Megan has not seen her father since she left. “I'm sad that I won't see him anymore, because I miss him and still love him. I always enjoyed it when we went to town together or when we played Pokémon Go. I don't know when I'll see him again, but I hope soon.”

She would really like her own house, but preferably one nearby. “I would like to go to a 'normal' house, but also stay at this school, so it has to be near here. I want to become a veterinarian because I want to make abused animals better. I hope that I will get a dog again later.”

A safe place for every child

Every child needs a safe place. Because only when your base is stable can you participate and get the best out of yourself. Kinderposttempels has been working on equal development opportunities for children for almost 100 years.

Read more about our various projects here.

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