Despite low wages and exploitation, children miss out on their education in order to earn meagre wages as informal workers within the tourist and manufacturing industries of Dindigul and Palani, while others resort to rag picking, begging or petty theft. This project provides vital support and protection to some of the most marginalized and discriminated children in Tamil Nadu, India, including orphans and street and working children.
Every year, due to domestic violence, family breakdown, and the need to supplement the family income, thousands of children migrate to the streets of Palani and Dindigul in Dindigul District. These children forgo their education for work within the tourist and manufacturing industries, while others resort to rag picking, begging or theft. These children often end up sleeping in temples, bus shelters or on the streets where they are extremely vulnerable to harassment, violence and sexual abuse.
The needs of over 500 vulnerable children will be met by centrally located 24-hour Rescue Centres in Palani and Dindigul. While meeting the children's basic needs through provision of nutritious food, washing facilities, clean clothing, shelter and counselling, a team of dedicated social workers identify education and training opportunites, as well as trying to reunite the children with their families through extensive outreach work in the community.
This project aims to promote the rights of children in Dindigul District and prevent their exploitation by bringing about a fundamental change in the treatment of vulnerable children. The project runs advocacy campaigns to raise awareness and educate local community leaders and institutions to stop practices that subject vulnerable children to discrimination, sexual abuse and exploitation, and increase the community's involvement in providing care and protection to street and working children.
International Childcare Trust
Arunodhaya Centre for Street and Working Children