Almost everyone in the canal side or railway squatter camps of central Kolkata depends on a daily wage from casual factory work, rag picking (collecting, sorting and selling waste), rickshaw driving, fruit and vegetable selling and other informal activities. Few families are able to cope with an emergency like a hospitalisation or other medical expenses. If the main earner in a family dies or becomes unable to earn, the family goes hungry. There is then the temptation to pull children out of education so that they can work.
This programme has provided the interim support for families in crisis. And your generosity has enabled our staff to come to the rescue of hundreds of families and individuals over the years. But we never expected a crisis like COVID 19 - when every single family in our target areas suddenly needed help. In 2020, thanks to the amazing generosity of our donors, we were able to provide food rations to 5000 families in need. And again this spring, when the the delta variant tore through India,we have been able to do the same.Another 5000 ration packs have been distributed so far this year.
We have focused particularly on the families whose children are in our education programme - as it is especially important that youngsters stay in education and don’t let the COVID crisis drive them into child labour or into early marriage.
So we want to thank you once again for your generosity and your loyalty to this important cause.
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