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Lok Kalyan Sansthan [LKS] strives to work towards creation of a society that is free of fear, hunger and exploitation. It also strives to create awareness among people about their responsibility in establishing child rights. Over the years, LKS has successfully strengthened the rapport with the community to ensure people's involvement in their programs. The Project Holder, Mr. Bhanwar Lal Chaudhury was awarded the CRY - Rippan Kapur Fellowship from 1996 – 98 for working on the issues of education, health and disability among children in villages of Jaisalmer district in Rajasthan. On realizing the importance of an integrated approach to addressing child rights issues, he registered Lok Kalyan Sansthan in 1998. Currently, LKS works across 16 villages of Baytu block of Barmer district, Rajasthan.
Lok Kalyan Sansthan [LKS] works with 1969 families in 16 villages spread over 4 Panchayats. Almost 57% of the population belongs to other backward castes (OBC) and 22% of the population is from the scheduled caste (SCs) community. The primary occupations are agriculture, animal rearing, casual laborers, small shops and other small businesses in the village. Agriculture production is not sufficient due to the scarcity and uncertainty of rain in Rajasthan. 20% of the land has been identified as irrigated in the survey and wells have been identified as the only source of irrigation. The irrigation situation becomes grim during the drought years. Under such conditions, people also work as casual labor with the famine relief work provided by the Government like constructing Kachcha roads during lean monsoon years. Relief activities like creation of employment opportunities, drinking water and fodder distribution are done by the Govt during the drought period. However, long-term solutions for mitigating the impact of recurring drought have still not been identified.
Due to the scattered existence, there is very little access to the health facilities. Reproductive and child health is still limited to timely vaccinations and supplementary nutrition from the ICDS. There has been an increase in health facilities in the past decade, but accessibility to these services is still very poor. The problem of working children is prevalent in the area. Children assist their families in agriculture, cattle grazing or look after their younger siblings, while their parents go out to work. Besides, gender discrimination against girl children, female feticide and infanticide and child marriages are rampant in the area. In this context, LKS intervenes with an aim to work towards ensuring rights of the deprived, exploited and dalit community by empowering them economically, politically and socially.
- To facilitate integrated development of all children and women.
- To plan and implement programs to improve the quality of life of the deprived communities, especially in terms of health, nutrition, mortality and education status of women.
- To empower people’s collectives to enable them to confront all forms of exploitation and oppression.
- To work for ensuring rights of Dalit communities – especially women and children.
Review and Impact
The CRY supported intervention of Prayatn Sansthan focussed on addressing food security and nutrition issues of Saharia children and on bringing about a positive change in the lives of Sahariya children thereby breaking the vicious cycle of food insecurity and vulnerability. Throughout year, focus was given on enabling community through community meetings, awareness drive on CR issues, formation of child protection committee (CBOs), activity plan of each CBOs on CR agenda. Base line data was collected through HH surveys in all 30 villages. Total 5717 children (3073 Boys & 2644 Girls) were found to be benefitted from the interventions of Prayatn Sansthan. Team has been mapping the government institutions of ICDS centers, Maa badi and PDS against indicators of regularity in service, on provision of SNP & hot cooked meal and pre-school education. Study on Knowledge, Attitude and practice of saharia community for food and nutrition for understanding the situation from socio-economic-cultural perspective was conducted. The draft report has been shared by Prayatn with CRY for comments and finalization. Experience of previous year has also paved way of going in-depth on the issue of infant & child death and widespread malnutrition in the coverage area.
Besides focussing on health and nutrition areas, mapping of 28 Govt. schools (13- PS, 11- UPS, 3- Secondary, 1 senior secondary) was also done to assess the status of their functioning and for identifying gaps. SMC members were provided with trainings to orient them on their roles and responsibilities related to quality education, MDM, sanitation, etc. The issue of corporal punishment was raised by Child Protection Committee members of Bhoyal which lead to stopping physical punishment in Bhoyal school. Workshop on child rights was organised for government education functionaries as well. After discussion with children group about recreational and sports activities, recreational material was provided to all children groups in 30 villages of coverage area.
LKS has established itself as an organization working to ensure child rights in the region of Barmer, specifically in Baitu Block and nearby 4 Blocks of Sindri, Gida, Balotra and Barmer. It has strengthened its rapport with the community during the last 10 years of direct intervention and has shown alignment with the rights based approach. With continued partnership with CRY, LKS has expanded the scope of the programs towards holistic child rights in whole block of Baitu.
- Birth registration and immunization done for 1530 children
- 376 children underwent health checkups (from NFE and ICDS)
- All 9 ICDS centers covered for activation and are now functioning with regular monitoring
- Dai (traditional birth attendants) group meetings and training organized where 40 Dai’s are members
- Out of 2190 SC families and 552 ST families, 1496 SC families have job cards and 378 ST families have job cards with NREGA
- 19 children are covered through CLC and 8 (4 boys and 4 girls) were mainstreamed
- 8 children who were studying in NFE (non formal education programs) were enrolled in government schools nearby
- 36 females and 44 males were freed from labor (working children and child labor included)
- 15 children’s groups were sustained in the area
- 4 girls adolescent groups were formed to discuss the issue of gender discrimination and child marriages
- To establish development rights for all children by making the community aware about education.
- Ensuring accessibility of government education facilities to all children in 16 operational villages.
- Ensuring quality education through involvement of the community.
- Ensuring 100% retention in government education centres.
- Birth registration for all new born and 100% for above 1 year children in the entire operational area.
- 100% immunization for all children born in the 16 operational villages.
- Regular pre-natal care for all pregnant women and 100% women for post-natal care by linking up with government run health programs in six operational villages.
- Facilitate nationality by including name of 100% new born babies in the ration card.
- Integrate child labor in education programs.
- Running special school for child labor.
- Initiate dialogue with the community on the issue of working children.
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