PROJECT NAME: Protect 500 Street & Working Children in IndiaPROJECT LOCATION: Dindigul District, Tamil Nadu, India LOCAL PARTNER: Arunodhaya Centre for Street and Working Children
This project protects street and working children in the towns of Dindigul, Palani and Vilpatty and prevents young children in remote rural areas leaving home to find exploitative work in these and other towns in the district.With the support of International Childcare Trust (ICT), Arunodhaya continues to focus their work on improving the lives of street and working children and other vulnerable children through a multi-pronged approach of:
• Direct intervention - withdrawing children from hazardous work and providing them with education, skills development and economic opportunities; and
• Prevention - raising awareness among children and communities about child rights and the hazards of child labour; ensuring children are enrolled in school at the right age and providing them with necessary after-school support to prevent drop-out.
Early Childhood Care (ECC)The project runs a crèche, which offers vital care and support to vulnerable young children of farmers and labourers from Vilpatty, a remote agricultural area in the mountains. It aims to integrate the wellbeing of young children with their progression and enrollment into primary education. At the crèche children are offered nutritious food and learning through play, songs and games. Parents are invited to regular planning meetings to encourage community ownership of the crèche. In May 2012 there were 23 children (13 boys & 10 girls) attending the crèche, of whom 12 (8 boys & 4 girls) continued to primary school. Currently 26 children (12 boys and 14 girls) are enrolled at the crèche.
Vocational TrainingThe project offers vocational skills training to street and working children (aged 14+) in the towns of Dindigul and Palani. Three vocational courses on welding, electrical and dress making are offered for a period of six months including both theory and practical training. The project has enrolled 58 youths on the training courses. Out of the 30 children who completed vocational training this year, 28 are now employed including six who are self-employed; the remaining 28 are still undergoing training. Most youths feel extremely positive about their chances of securing stable, secure employment following the course.
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