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Christine Oddy To See Action To Help Street Children

Coventry and North Warwickshire Euro MP Christine Oddy will soon be on her way to Central America where she will be looking at projects to provide shelter and help for the region's street children.

She is heading for Guatemala and Nicaragua where she will visit crisis centres, homes and training schemes run by Casa Alianza, the international charity which aims to rescue runaway young people from destitution and exploitation.

The charity has built up a network of partnerships with local authorities and other organisations in the region.  But its resolute stance in combatting the mistreatment of young people has led to clashes in some places with police and the legal system which has been suspected of collusion in the abduction and murder of homeless youngsters.  It is currently pursuing more than 450 legal cases against people suspected of taking part in the abuses.

Whilst in the two countries Ms Oddy will see how Casa Alianza provides crisis centres which provide an immediate refuge for young people and training centres where young people can catch up on their educational or get vocational training. The charity also runs a mothers and babies programme for young women, many of whom have been rescued from prostitution.  Casa Alianza is also active in Mexico and Honduras.

Ms Oddy will also spend time visiting a number of micro-credit projects which have been backed by the Leamington Spa-based organisation Results.  They enable local people to break free form moneylenders and banks which charge high rates of interest.

Ms Oddy said:

"Casa Alianza is doing wonderful work and is often the only organisation to extend the hand of friendship and help to these young people. But it is particularly sad there is a need for it to have to start work in Nicaragua. Street children were virtually unknown there until the change of government and a crippling level of national debt forced growing numbers of people into poverty."

MORE INFORMATION: Christine Oddy MEP   01203 552328

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Christine Oddy MEP



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CWN / News / Newswire / Christine Oddy MEP / 5 Aug 98

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