2020-10-07 PHILIPPINES

Marcellin Foundation Center: a shelter for children in conflict with the law

Almost every year, the Marcellin Foundation Center in General Santos (Philippines), hosts an average of sixty youth, transferred to the center from the government institution because Marcellin Home has become an alternative to a detention center and a formation place for youth on suspended sentence.

Although Marcellin Foundation Center (founded in 1991 by the Marist Brothers) started with street children as its original clients, they could not close their eyes to other groups of children at risk. The program has accepted, into its residential care, abandoned, neglected, and abused children, and also Children in Conflict with the Law (CICL).

By the year, the children/youth who have been trained at the Center have reported a success rate of 65% in terms of job placement as employed, self-employed and working overseas. Thanks to the activities of the center, many young people were able to get out of the illegal turns and violence and build a future for themselves.

Taking care of children in conflict with the law

Marcellin Foundation Center is the only NGO addressing the problems of Children in Conflict with the Law in General Santos City and suburban areas The government has a center, the Regional Rehabilitation Center for Youth (RRCY) which can accommodate only 20 CICL, and only those who have been sentenced by the courts. Sad to say, most CICLs if given a choice have expressed that they prefer to come to Marcellin.

Br. Crispin Betita, head of Marcellin Foundation, and his collaborators take charge of the youth recovery process through different phases: knowledge through dialogue in the street or in the places where the children are, reception in the foster homes of the center, psychological support, schooling for those who dropped out of school, professional training course and internship support. The center also offers a scholarship program so that students can continue their training and be in contact with a network of local companies that welcome children in internships.


The Marist Province of East Asia, FMSI (Marist Foundation for International Solidarity), Misean Cara (Irish organization) and the Marist Brothers of Germany support the activities of the Marist Center.

Last summer UNICEF visited the Marcellin Foundation Center and made this very touching documentary:


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