Muda, 9 years old

Muda and his baby sister were living with his mother and her boyfriend until the two adults were imprisoned. His grandmother and uncle were also in prison, all on drug charges. His great-grandmother took over their role as caregiver, but her age prevented her from providing proper care for Muda’s sister. So the 9-year-old was often tasked to look after his baby sister after school, a responsibility that burdened and frustrated him.

Without close supervision, Muda was left to his own devices most of the time. He often played games late into the night, and as a result, was often tired and grouchy in school. He also showed his frustration and resentment through angry outbursts, and refused to do his homework. He was apathetic to the consequences of his actions.

Mindful of the cause of his temper outbursts, CITY staff helped Muda manage his anger by encouraging him to express himself through activities he enjoyed, like drawing, and arts and craft. Staff also kept reassuring him that they would always be there if he needed to talk to someone, and encouraged him to complete his homework. CITY also worked closely with Muda’s school and teachers on improving his behaviour and schoolwork.

With CITY staff’s efforts and those of his adoptive grandfather, who later became his legal guardian, Muda’s behaviour improved. He became calmer, behaved better, showed more commitment in his studies, was more willing to take responsibility for his actions. His adoptive grandfather brought him to visit his mother often, which helped him cope with her absence.

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