Project Save The Children

Campaign Story

About the project

The project aims to protect children in West Bengal and Jharkhand from risks and harmful practices by ensuring occupational standard practices by local protection workforces. The project promotes engagement and coordination among stakeholders responsible for protecting children at the village, block and district levels and advocates for improving Integrated Child Protection Services (ICPS) using evidence and collective action.

This Project is fully funded by the Oak foundation.

Making a difference

ICPS establishes a robust framework for child protection throughout India, though realities often fall short of these ideals. CRY America’s Project Save the Children focuses on the effective and sustainable implementation of existing child protection mechanisms such as village level, block level, and district child protection committees. Community groups trained in child protection policy lead the charge in strengthening existing entities and advocating for such infrastructure where absent. In addition to nurturing community ownership of child protection systems in this manner, the project maps vulnerable populations and connects families and children with social programs.

Action during COVID times

● Community child protection groups supported district administration in monitoring and follow-up for 1000 COVID-19-infected persons.
● State-level discussions were held on the District Child Protection Unit’s (DCPU) roles in addressing emergent COVID-related vulnerabilities.

The way forward

● Strengthen community groups and, in turn, Child Protection Workforce through capacity-building workshops, authorship and distribution of training materials on Parenting Without Violence and Gender-Based Violence
● Organize four district and block-level coordination meetings in each state to foster synchronized action for prevention and response
● Maximize children’s participation in advocacy platforms and activities
● Coordinate two consultation workshops in each state to strategize post-COVID child protection interventions

Project Impact

enrollment done for out – of – school children between the age groups of 6 to 14 years

5249

Vulnerable children and their families linked to social safety net programs.

enrollment done for out – of – school children between the age groups of 15 to 18 years

41

Community group members recruited and trained on Child Safeguarding Policy, Integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS), Child Protection Committee (CPC) composition, and different vulnerabilities of children.

children rescued from child labor and mainstreamed

275

Village-Level Child Protection Committees trained.

enrollment done for out – of – school children between the age groups of 6 to 14 years

53

Block-Level Child Protection Committee (BLCPC) members trained on roles and responsibilities.

enrollment done for out – of – school children between the age groups of 15 to 18 years

47

Cases of early marriage, elopement and sexual abuse addressed by BLCPC.

children rescued from child labor and mainstreamed

42

Child-protection cases referred to DCPU

slums out of 23 have become child marriage free

2595

Cases of vulnerable children identified.

Last Year’s Grant Disbursed: $11,177

Current Year’s Approved Grant – $56,426

Story

“I don’t want my son to have the same fate as ours. But if he doesn’t go to work, we will starve.” – Habib’s Mother, Firdausi.

Habibullah, a 13-year-old child, is living with his parents and studying in class 5th in West Bengal. His parents are seasonal daily laborers in an agricultural field, where the work is very irregular. Habib’s elder brother works as a migrant laborer in a neighboring state but lost employment during the pandemic. His elder sister helps his mother with household chores. Due to his family’s financial situation, he was forced to work in a tailoring shop.

When the economic situation for the family was deteriorating every day, Habib started working from morning till night to sustain the family. He shares, “On the first day, I felt like crying. I wanted to continue with my studies, but there I was at the shop, getting bullied by senior employees for not being able to hold scissors properly.”

When Habib’s story reached CRY America’s project partner, they immediately contacted every stakeholder involved – Habib, his parents, teachers and the employer. The team counseled parents and employer about child labor laws. They also visited his school to ensure his education was not hindered.

A meeting was conducted to inform the Village Level Child Protection Committee to keep a vigil on families in vulnerable conditions. Under a government employment guarantee program, discussions were carried out for renewing Habib’s father’s job contract.

After all the efforts from the team, Habibullah finally started continuing his education online with his neighbor’s help, and his family ensured to send him back to school once it reopens.

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