on the details of
Chittoor District, Andhra Pradesh, India
Thematic Intervention: Protection, Education, Participation, JJ Homes.
Sanghamithra Service Society (SSS) is a non governmental organization established in the year 2001 with legal Registration under Society Registration Act 1860 and Foreign Contribution Regulation Act 1976 and Under Section 12 A of Income tax Act 1961 and 80(G) Tax exemption. Sanghamithra Service Society (SSS) is working with target communities like scheduled caste, Scheduled tribe and backward minorities for the upliftment of the downtrodden communities & children in Chandragiri ,Tirupati Rural & Urban Mandal of Chittoor District. Mr. Vishwanath is acting as a President for the organization. Sanghamithra Service Society is having good rapport with different rights based networks at the Chittoor District level to address the issues like child rights, eradication of the manual scavenging system and access to equal education opportunity for marginalized children.
Key Issues Addressed:
In terms of urbanisation, Tirupati town is one of the fast growing towns in India during the last four decades. The town has witnessed a substantial increase in urban population which is partially natural growth but heavily with the increase of slums and slum dwellers. Most of the slum areas have cropped up on government and municipal lands especially on road margins and government poramboke. Bulk of the dwellers belong to the poorer sections of the society and are uneducated. Most of the children are becoming child laborers in order to support their families.
Girl children & women are engaged in in domestic work and work as sales girls in cloth shops/ show rooms. Beads and chain making is a traditional occupation of Nakkala community and they are into seasonal migration.
There are 86 child labor in the operational area out of which 54 are boys and 32 are girls. 29 are in 6-14 age-group and 57 are in 15-18 age-group. 100% are working in unorganized sector. Most of this child labor is working in construction industry, as painters, as waste papers collectors and doing sanitation work. Girls mainly work as domestic help and as helpers in grocery shops and clothes showrooms and go for rag-picking and sweeping work (under municipality). 30 %( 8/27) habitations are child-labor-free in the operational area.
There are 154 dropout in the operational area out of which 68 are boys and 86 are girls. 84 are in 6-14 age-group and 70 are in 15-18 age-group.
In Tirupathi there are (Reception Unit, Children Home, Observation Home, Special Home) 4 JJ Homes for boys & girls. There are 327 children staying in 4 JJ Homes. Out of 327 children, 81%(265/327) of children are going to schools,8% of children going for vocational course and 11% of children not going to schools or having vocational course.
- Reduce child labor from 86 to 76 in the intervention area.
- Reduce dropout from 154 to 134 in the operational area.
- Enhance understanding on Juvenile Justice (JJ) System in the District and do intervention to improve infrastructure facilities in JJ homes.
Achievements & Impact in the Review Period
From 2015-16 onwards Sanghamithra Service Society became implementing partner with CRY and is focusing on protection Rights (child labor, JJ system) and access to education.Sanghamithra Service Society is having good rapport with different Rights based Networks at the Chittoor District level to address the issues like Child Rights, Eradication of the manual scavenging system and equal education opportunity for marginalized children.
This year, the programming has aided the achievement of objectives as per the 3 year road map. To start with, the partner organization has geared to work on the two priorities Protection issues of child labor & Children in JJ homes.
The focused household interventions and child tracking has significantly enhanced the relationship of the project team with the children and families. The issue of child labor has now come into the household discourse and families have to started to directly engage with it and more importantly they have started to actively take decisions regarding their children. Parents are now becoming active participants in the community meetings and are raising their voices in the colony sangham meeting while also playing active roles within the schools.
Few of the highlights of the achievement this year are as follows:
- The team identified number of child labor within 6-18 years and ensured mainstreaming of 12 child labor during the year.
- 25 dropout children were mainstreamed from 6-14 yrs age group and 10 drop out were mainstreamed from 15-18 yr age group.
- Team participated in special drive against child labor program in Tirupati Municipal Area organized by the educational authorities,labor and police departments- 2 primary and 3 upper primary school’s new playground was sanctioned during the year.
- SSS team ensured status report on economic vulnerability of 701 families available and was able to build up deeper understanding on various stakeholders influencing child labor families.
- The project enabled 20 families to apply for transportation expenses and ensured transport benefits for 10 children and prevented 5 schools from closure.
- 115 families sensitized on the importance of girl child education.
- Team ensured child friendly teachings and child friendly environment in 21 schools.
This has led to people coming forward to help change the lives of children and government officials becoming more accountable. In some cases, buildings have been approved for Observatory Homes and children were provided food etc. Positive outcomes of the intervention:
- 94 % children in the age group of 6-14 years are continuing their education.
- 4 social welfare hostels infrastructure facilities improved and it benefited 530 children.
- SSS is working with 4 JJ homes in Tirupathi. In order to understand the problems of the children in JJ Homes, SSS took special permission from authorities to visit these homes and also to participate in JJ Board meetings. With the efforts, 57 children were admitted to schools from JJ Homes.
- SSS team conducted 4 days training for 12 children on child rights issues where all children had a chance to participate in the meetings, express their opinions and participate in the trainings.
Reduce child labor from 113 to 56 and Reduce drop out from 171 to 85
- Sensitize parents of child laborers and other parents on the importance of education especially girl child education.
- Conduct awareness programmes / Kalajathas on child labor at community level.
- Conduct capacity building sessions through meetings/campaigns for CBOs on child labor (Prohibition and Regulation) Act and RCFCE Act(Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act).
- Engage with media to publish articles on importance of education / child labor situation.
- Involve Panchayati Raj Institutions / Ward members in sensitizing parents on child labor issue.
- Encourage Panchayati Raj Institutions / Ward members to monitor schools to ensure better service delivery.
- Regular monitoring of schools and hostels by project team members.
- Track all children in the age-group of 6-14 years to ensure they are in school.
- Identify and assist children to apply for social security entitlements.( caste certificates, scholarships, bus pass, medical certificates for differently able children)
- Strengthen school management committee by ensuring regular meetings and parents regular participation in meetings.
- Ensure improved infrastructure facilities in schools especially girls' toilets, sufficiency of teachers.
- Personal counselling to parents whose children are working as child labor to sensitize them about negative effects on children.
- Explore suitable academic / vocational courses available for 15-18 age group children.
Enhance understanding on JJ System in the District and arrive at intervention plans-Ensure 45 non-school-going children are admitted into schools.
- Study on “factors that caused children to be in JJ homes”.
- Survey formats will be prepared.
- Orientation training will be conducted for the team on the survey.
- Discussion will be ensured with experts to consolidate study report.
- Conduct media meet to highlight the findings of the study.
- Enhanced engagement with CWC (Child Welfare Committee) / JJB in Tirupathi.
- Participation in JJ Board / CWC (Child Welfare Committee) meetings (as observers) to understand matters pertaining to JJ Homes and to make children feel comfortable.
- Promote Child-friendly environment in JJ homes
- Counsel JJ home staff for child-friendly behaviour.
- Sensitization of JJ home staff against corporal punishments and to opt for child-friendly dealing methods. Sensitization of JJ home staff against corporal punishments and to opt for child-friendly dealing methods.
- Put efforts to admit children into schools.
- Prepare list of non-school-going children.
- Motivate children to attend the school.
- Discuss with JJ home authorities and school authorities to admit the children into school.
- Conduct counselling sessions to adolescent girls against child marriages and sexual abuses
- Enhance understanding on the JJ system in the District:
- Capacity Building training for Project team on JJ Act
- Understand the roles of JJB and CWC (Child Welfare Committee).
- Understand JJB decision making process and the status of home investigation reports.
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