on the details of
From the very inception, Bal Sakha started playing a role of watch dog in the community. Sanat Kumar Sinha is a trained social worker from College of Social Work, Mumbai. In 1982 he undertook a detailed study of children languishing in Government Homes in erstwhile Bihar. In 1988 he founded the organization Bal Sakha with the view to protect the rights of children in Bihar. He is a member of State Selection Committee for the implementation of Juvenile Justice Act in Bihar and also the member of State Monitoring Committee on child trafficking and sexual exploitation of women. The study carried out by the Project Holder and the other social workers from College of Social Work, Mumbai on Children Homes in Bihar brought out the mismanagement prevailing in the Homes. To get some remedial measures for the Homes a PIL was filed in High Court on behalf of the programme for protection of child rights. As a milestone of this effort, about 1055 cases of Juveniles were quashed which was pending for long time in violation of the provisions of the law meant for children.
Bal Sakha with its vast experiences and expertise in dealing with legal cases realized that the plight of the children in Bihar is pathetic and even worse in the case of children in conflict with law. In 2002, Bal Sakha conducted a state wide study to understand the reality of the juvenile justice system in Bihar and identified few gaps. It was seen that more than 9% of total pending Juvenile Cases, has been pending for more than 10 years. There were instances of juvenile cases pending for as long as 20 to 24 years. In 1367 cases, the children were sent to the remand Homes, 606 cases to prisons and in rest 234 cases there were no records where the juveniles were sent. 3604 cases were pending for a period more than 3 years, 2014 cases were pending for a period between 1 – 3 years. 644 cases were pending for a period less than 1 year. A study conducted by the Resource organization revealed the following children’s issues related to the economic conditions of the State which have become integral part of the society. Due to poverty, migration for livelihood opportunities is very high. This makes children exposed to various social evils like crime, drugs etc. Children also start working at an early age to support the financial burden of the family. Poor educational facility is another major problem in Bihar. Child Trafficking is another common phenomenon of the region. Juvenile girls are being married to grooms of other states where these girls are first subjected to sexual harassment. Children work in hazardous condition in carpet factories and bidi manufacturing factories etc.
- To enhance the standard of the Govt institutions meant for the juvenile and mainstreaming of the children into the community.
- To enhance the capacity of the Core group members and encompass the civil society on this issue.
- To do advocacy with the Govt to activate the Child Welfare Committees (CWC) and JJB.
- To provide the knowledge about the Child right and child protection the community in the target operational area.
- To mobilize the women and youth population of the area to monitor and protest against incidences of hazardous child labour, child marriages and child trafficking.
- To create a platform for the children to participate in various cultural activities to promote their skill of expression and knowledge.
Review and Impact
Bal Sakha reached out to the community to check the child rights violation in selected 10 villages in Patna, Bhagalpur and Munger district. Based on the study findings, it identifies these operational villages as most potential villages of child trafficking, child labour and rampant early marriages. Organization invests in the children of these communities and preparing them for raising voices and acting upon against the CR violation. In Patna, Bal Sakha has taken up 5 Tolas for direct intervention along with Kurthol, Hulluckpur, Etwarpur villages and focused on the engagement with the children. Under community awareness program, children rally for awareness building process was done in 10 villages. During last year, Bal Sakha took up the Right to Education (RTE) issue as core intervention in the village. They started visiting the private schools and negotiate with the teachers to take admission of poor children in their schools as per the provisions of the RTE Act. Along with the education process, the organization’s staff also focused on the birth registration activities of the children, immunization in ICDS centre.
Strategically the organization has formed small groups of women, men and youth members called Bal Suraksha Manch. The concept is to sensitize, making them aware and monitor the issue of child trafficking, child labour, child marriage, birth registration etc in the villages. In last year, BAL SAKHA organized a community level workshop on community owned child protection mechanism where 55 common villagers participated. They ensured support of the IIHER for health check up for the children. Patna CPC units also took up the case of rape victim and approached the Police for necessary action. Bal Sakha animator is also liaison with the PDS owners, CDPO, Government school teachers for ensuring quality services.
|Impact Indicators||No of Children|
|Birth registration certificate ensured||
|Child workers joined in the child protection center||
|Child workers rescued and linked with the Child Protection Centre(CPC)||
|Child workers attended in school||
|Drop out children enrolled in school||
|Children linked for immunization||
|Children protected from early marriage||
- Direct intervention in the community to check the child right violation and empower the community to own the mechanism in 10 villages of Patna district and exploring intervention plan in Bhagalpur district.
- Focus in 10 districts (Bhagalpur, Munger, Purnea, Gaya, Patna, Chapra, Bhojpur, Muzaffarpur, Betiah and Darbhanga) in three region and creating support systems to make the JJ system functional.
- Strengthening all JJ systems in these districts and making it as demonstrable model.
- Playing the role as resource organization in the state and capacity building of the state and non state actors.
- Exploring different forums, platforms and raise voice to make this issue a PUBLIC agenda.
- Advocacy towards effective implementation of the JJ act in the state.
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