CHILD SAFETY NET PROJECT REPORT
BOSCO has joined with Global Giving in order to help to create a safety net in Bangalore for the young at risk and to support them. As a result, an innovative project- “Rescuing 9000 Children From the Streets in India” was initiated. During the past two months, many activites were undertaken to create a security network for children on the streets, through various rehabilitative and promotional programs. The details of the activities are as follows:
- With the help of the rescue team, BOSCO monitored the inflow of the children to the streets.
- Our street educators are on the street 24/7 and through them we were able to rescue 761 children from the street to the safer environment. These children were either alone in the city, had been abused or trafficked, were addicted to drugs or were begging.
- We conducted 21 awareness programs to highlight the issues and problems that vulnerable children face to help build a community that cares for its children.
- We involved 31 volunteers during this period to use their expertise in the rehabilitation program for the street children. They involved themselves in many ways for example identifying children at risk, informing BOSCO’s child help line regarding child labours, regularly organizing motivational programs, dance therapies, craft works, games etc.
- Out of the 761 children rescued, 525 (68%) children were placed back with their families. The rest of the children were referred to other institutions as required or are being cared for in BOSCO Homes.
- A child protection officer is appointed to implement the project in its expected form
A rescue vehicle has been procured for the speedy rescue and transportation of the children to the safer environment
Total number of children rescued from the streets of Bangalore
Months Boys Girls Total
December 2012 299 30 329
January 2013 379 53 432
Total 678 83 761
Table No. 1 reveals the total number of vulnerable children rescued from the streets during the last two months. An average of 12 children was identified and rescued per each day by BOSCO’s street educators. In order to prevent children from different forms of exploitations , BOSCO ensures 24/7 physical presence of street educators at various transit points of Bangalore city. Through deploying street educators, BOSCO aiming to reach out to every child who is in need of care and protection on the streets.
2.Total number of children home placed
Months Boys Girls Total
December 197 06 203
January 302 20 322
Total 499 26 525
Home integration is the reinstatement of street and working children back into their families and mainstream society. BOSCO believes that every child belongs to a home that caters to his/her educational, emotional and recreational needs. The Home Placement Program aims to take formative measures in enabling and empowering children to reintegrate into their own families and mainstream society. Families as well as children are offered counseling services to help resolve reasons why the child might have left home. In December and January 525 children (68%) were reunified with the family out of 761 children rescued and remaining 32 % were institutional placed either in BOSCO homes or other centres.
Impact – Awarness Generation
Three students from Christ University for whom BOSCO staff had given awareness about children’s issues noticed a child who was wandering on the road adjacent to their college without having food for 3 days. The child had run away from a begging racket as they used to torture him and he was unable to bear the pain. The students felt the need to rescue this child and the awareness programme conducted by BOSCO, had told them the possibilities that are available for such children.
The students brought the child to BOSCO and after providing the child with food, clothes and initial health check ups, did other formalities like gathering initial information, rapport building and counseling to the child and inbuilt confidence in the child that he was in a safe environment and promised him that all possible help would be made available to him for his future endeavours. The students followed up this case through phone calls and periodic visits to BOSCO’s rehabilitation centre where the child was staying for further rehabilitation purpose. This was an eye opener for the students and these students after this incident ment their college authorities and chalked out an intensive plan in very detail towards children found begging in and around the premises of the college and its vicinities. They have also shared their contact details with BOSCO so that their helps can be south whenever any need occurs in matters realtedd to children at risk. This incident was shared by the students at various platforms which motivated number of young people to join in the movements towards creating child friendly spaces everywhere.
Durga, his sister and their father came to Bangalore from a remote village of Thanjavur in Tamilnadu State, India. After few years doing odd and risky jobs, their father died of unknown causes. The two orphaned children were left alone to fend for themselves. Both Durgha and his sister started begging to meet their livelihood. BOSCO staff contacted them from Bangalore City Market area and sent them to BOSCO’s rehabilitation centre for further intervention and long term plan. Durga was counseled and was encouraged to take up skill training, as he was not interested in studying. He joined for two wheeler reapir and maintenance course and carried on with the course. While BOSCO counselor tried to find the family roots of these two children. With the bits and pieces information provided by the two, BOSCO counselors took them to their native place and began to look for their family.
Through the relentless efforts of children along with BOSCO staff, the biological mother was found out and BOSCO counselor began to interact with her. It was then the staff understood that the father had lied to the children that their mother had died. This was also the reason stated to the children for leaving the village and coming to Bangalore in search of better prospectus in the absence of their mother. The mother was really delighted to see their children and whole heartedly welcomed them to her house. The reunion was really very emotional and tears rolled continuously from the eyes of the children as well as their mother. The children along with their mother and BOSCO staff came back to Bangalore. Mother was happy to see the rehabitilation centres where her children were looked after for more than ten years. She profusely thanked all the staff members for looking after and caring them lovingly for the past several years. In her words “ I got once again life and now I find a real meaning for my life. I will look afer my children the best way possible and try to give the love which they had lost all these while. I am extremely gratefyl to all those who helped in getting my children back and I in turn will render a helping to any child who is in need. These two children of mine were lost and now I got them back”.
The children thanked all the staff members and their friends and promised to be in touch with them through phone calls and letters. BOSCO team felt happy as they could give these two children their real mother whose genuine love and concern is going to make a real difference to the rest of their life. After a long ceremony of wishing everyone and saying good bye with joy brimming their hearts, they journeyed to their home town.Attachments: