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Mar 6, 2020

Film Screening: Mental health of Children

The mental health of children

 

Lallubhai Compound, Mankhurd, has witnessed a high incidence of suicide and other cases of mental health among the younger demographic. Continued displacement from habitat, lack of basic facilities, neglect due to family disputes and single parenting are some of the issues that have contributed to it.

 To that effect, screening the Marathi film Killa was an attempt towards creating safe familial spaces for children in the city. The film initiated a dialogue between children and parents of the resettlement colony on developing a healthy relationship.

 The children in the audience shared how they related to the fear of exams, the bond of friendship, and the excitement with respect to the opposite gender, among other things shown in the film.

 They identified with the 11-year-old protagonist’s struggle to cope with his father’s death and mother’s subsequent job transfer. And spoke about the role of friends in life, the loneliness after shifting to a new place, and the struggle of making new friends.

 “Life is nothing without friends. But it takes a healthy environment to yield good friendships. It is important for children to realize that such bonds can also be developed with family members,” a woman said. “The child in the film was very clear-headed. He understood his mother’s tensions at work and accepted her job transfers with patience.”  

 Another parent conceded that “we also face tensions at work and we often vent it out on our children.” She added that “it is important that parents responsibly spend time with children so they don’t feel neglected and alienated.”

 The children understood the importance of a good relationship between parents and children. And held that both sides need to develop an attitude of understanding for the same.

Feb 3, 2020

The Caravan Journey-Public Awareness & Street Play

Public awareness and street play at Dadar station.

The children in the caravan in collaboration with Railway Childline rallied on the railway station and performed a short street play and were addressed by the senior authorities of the Railway force, distributing pamphlets and brochures on child rights awareness. This event was organised with the support of other civil society organisations, NGOs, Childline and Railway authorities.

Around 10-12 authorities and railway police present.

Reach out to more than 500 people at the railway station. 400 brochures and bookmarks were distributed.

Dadar railway station event was organized in collaboration with GRP, RPF and Station Director.

Station Director - Kakde sir, station manager - Panda Sir shared that it is very important to provide safe environment for children. On station with the help of CHILDLINE, they are trying to make the station child-friendly.

They also appreciated the efforts that YUVA is taking for spreading awareness about Child Rights and ensuring their participation in it.

Following people were present:

1. Inspector GRP- Prasad Padhte.

2. Avinash Pawar- GRP

2. Sub Inspector RPF -SK Singh

3. Station Director - Kakde Sir

4.station manager - Panda Sir

5. Electric Department- Prakash sir

6. Cleaning supervisor - Amit Kumar

 

BASS performed a street play on child rights and Appealed Travellers to ensure a safe environment and participation of children-

“Badde Badde log… Baatein Baddi … “

Street play begins with the title. Where BASS children showcase that how at various places be it home, locality, factories children are not safe and are denied of their basic rights to:

  1. Development
  2. Protection
  3. Life
  4. Education and
  5. Participation

 

Through the play, it was narrated that at factories they are hired though there are strict rules to prohibit them from working if they are below 18 and fall between 14 to 18 years but in these places, they’re made to work as the labor cost of hiring children is comparatively lesser. Also, at home, they are not safe and are at constant threat and danger of exploitation from their own family members and relatives. At times even when we know that something wrong has happened to the child, we remain silent to not escalate the issue in fear but it actually enforces the perpetrators of such heinous acts. In our society girls are still looked down when it comes to education and are expected to stay inside and do learn and do household chores and be marriage ready instead of aspiring for a better career with the pursuance of education.

In the end, everyone took an oath to safeguard and promote these minimum basic rights and practice meaningful participation at every space and approach authorities who are working towards promoting these interests of children like- Police, YUVA, ChildLine, BASS, etc. in case any problem arises.

One of the Passengers at Dadar station after witnessing the street play stated and accepted the importance of awareness generation of the rights of children. And appreciated that though in some way it’s been done and like the efforts of the team.  He said he could relate this as he has a younger sister at home.

Discussion with Local authorities
Discussion with Local authorities
Street Play at Railway station
Street Play at Railway station
Dec 9, 2019

The Caravan Journey

To commemorate UNCRC and popularize children’s right to meaningful participation on the theme “Ensuring child rights with child participation”, a child-led caravan traversed the city of Mumbai on 20th of November, the day when the UNCRC (United Nations Convention on the Rights of Children) was signed by 196 countries globally.  We believe that children and young people can play a significant role as agents of transformation with the capability to engage in decision-making processes, in accordance with their evolving capacities and gradually increasing autonomy.

 

 The Caravaners

35 Child leaders belonging to the Bal Adhikar Sangarsh Sangatan (BASS) at Mumbai City level traversed the city in the caravan reaching out to many more children, young people and adults, and also duty-bearers and people in the system namely- Corporators, railway police, government officials, etc. educating them about child rights and the power of child participation

 

 The Caravan Journey:

Caravan launch with the Inauguration Event held at Gurukul school, Malwani, around 10.00 AM

Panel discussion with the duty-bearers: School principal Mr. Farid Shaikh, Community Development Officer Mr. Mahindra, Member of CPC and Anganwadi supervisor Ms. Shubhangi Rane, YUVA organization representative, member of Child Safety Support Forum and Women’s Cell Ms. Parineeta, Journalist and Social Activist Mr. Nisar Ali, and Child Representatives from BASS Malwani- Sachin and Shivani- discussed their commitment to child rights and what they can do to ensure meaningful child participation in the system

In attendance were the students of classes 9 to 12 of Gurukul high school and junior college, YUVA staff, bass members, Anganwadi teachers. More than 100 students and children were present.

While addressing the school students the Mr. Mahindra shared his own journey of coming from BMC school and how he faced problems using English while speaking and how he preferred Marathi over English was humorous to learn about.

 

Pooja Yadav while answering the questions asked by a student present there - 1098

Children below 14 years old should not be allowed to work.  As there are constitutional safeguards to protect their rights and it’s a punishable offence to make them work in households and factories.

Every child is important and she enforced, “You all are change makers, you come ahead, you work for them (children). Then change can definitely happen in the society

 

Principal sir,

You all can teach students as giving examples of few who have taken the initiative to teach the students at their own homes. By calling children who are working in nearby hotels. And made them ready for basic education. Minimum literacy. He appreciated Maharashtra government where a student even if he’s not going to school, he can directly appear for class 8th exams and will be eligible for board exams.

Out house schools: for the children who need to work so their houses have inflow of income to survive and sustain. So, it’s not necessary that a student necessarily needs to go school so this option is available and can be promoted.

Also, he asked student, “Can you share your education?”, as every time depending on government will not work. He strengthened his point by stating Malvani population which counts around 9 lacs. And for this large number police force of 1500-1600 should be there. but instead of that the number of police men in marginally low and is 140. It was understood that Manpower is low. Going for regular rounds, while on duty is challenging so you can’t depend on government for everything and every time.

“You need to learn to come forward so that you can benefit the others as you are privileged but not all are. You need to demand for your needs then only it can be provided. Fight and get it. If you can fight you can survive. What you want to do fight for your rights? Or Accept your fate and be silent? And blame the government.

Further, Alicia substantiated Principal Sir’s points by adding, “We need to support the system for the growth. Change can happen if we want”

After the formal discussion Chief guests were felicitated by giving roses and Sumati tai gave certificate of commitment to the guests who were there to attend the Inaugural discussion. Tai was glad that the knowledge which we got was immense from everyone who came and like always powerfully propagated:

“Bal shakti aayi hai..          Nayii roshi aayi hai..          Ladenge..        Jitengee…”

Women’s cell counselor was called on stage and Nisaar sir told students, “utilize time on sports for physical and mental wellbeing.”

 

With this the opening session got over and Alicia requested everyone to move towards the road where the Caravan flag was waiting to be waved. Teachers along with Principal Sir came forth and everyone was led by Zarin and Bala where the bus was on hault.

 
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