Orphans & Children’s Care
Project Orphans & Children’s Care is a World level program of Dr M Chandrasekhar International Foundation, which is committed to providing basic education and healthcare to underprivileged children. Dr M Chandrasekhar International Foundation believes that whether you are addressing healthcare, poverty, population control, unemployment or human rights, there’s no better place to start than in the corridors of education.
Education is both the means as well as the end to a better life; means, because it empowers an individual to earn his/her livelihood and the end because it increases one’s awareness on a range of issues – from healthcare to appropriate social behavior to understanding one’s rights, and in the process evolve as a better citizen.
It works for education for underprivileged children who are under difficult circumstances, such as child labor, children of poorest of the parents, children inflicted and affected with HIV/AIDS, street and runaway children, children with rare disabilities, disaster struck children and slum children. Special emphasis is given on girl education and women education, so that they and their families get empowered.
Definition of Child:
- The Child Labor (Prohibition and Regulation) Act, 1986 defines a child as a person who has not completed fourteen years of age.
- The Factories Act, 1948 and Plantation Labor Act 1951 states that a child is one that has not completed fifteen years of age.
- The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000 has changed the definition of child to any person who has not completed 18 years of age.
- POCSO Act 2012 defines a child as any person below eighteen years of age.
- Free education: Free education holds the key to eliminating child labor. It has already proved to be a success in many places around the globe and with more effort; the cases of child labor will greatly reduce.
- Mid-day meals schemes: Mid-day meals schemes can also be used as a motivating factor for children whose parents can barely afford a meal to learn.
- Moral Polishing: Child labor should not be entertained at all. It is legally and morally wrong. Children should not be allowed to provide labor at the expense of getting an education and enjoying their childhood.
- Create demand for skilled and trained workers: By creating the demand for skilled and trained workers, child labor cases will reduce since almost all child laborers fall under the unskilled worker category.
- Awareness: Creating awareness about the illegality of child labor can also help in stemming from the practice.
- Empowerment of poor people: The poor living standards and financial constraints sometimes make them unwilling participants in this vice. Empowering poor people through knowledge and income-generating projects would go a long way in reducing cases of child labor.
A new report by United Nations indicates that a significant share of child labor and human trafficking inglobal supply chains occurs at their lower tiers, in activities such as raw material extraction andagriculture, making due diligence, visibility and traceability challenges.
More than 350 million children worldwide are still working as child laborers and a staggering 175 million at least, are subject to its worst forms. As per the National Census 2011, there are close to 14.1 million child laborers in India, in the age group of 5 to 14 years.
- 19.14 million child laborers between 5-14 years in India (2011 Census data)
- Child labor in 2011 has decreased by around 20% from 2001 Census Figures
- There are 26.87 million working children in India between 15-18 years.
- As per 2011 Census, 1 in 12 children are working in India (5-18 years)
- 80% of the child labor in India is concentrated in rural areas
- ILO 2016 data indicates that there are 156 million working children in the world between 5-17 years, of which 26.8 million children are in India. So 16% of the working children (or every 6th working child) in this age group is in India
Child labor in India, somehow, has become a social norm that we accept and tolerate in our society. Thisexploitative and abusive practice will continue unless society adopts a zero tolerance attitude towards it.Children continue to be exploited and abused because the State and people do not address children’sissues comprehensively and effectively.
However, only ‘rescuing’ children, often will not help. What is required is addressing the reasons that force children to work. Children work mainly to help their families because the adults do not have appropriate employment and adequate income. Children also work because there is a demand for cheap labor in the market. When children are forced to work long hours their ability to get adequate nourishment and to attend school is limited, preventing them from gaining education.
Dr M Chandrasekhar International Foundation efforts towards the prevention of child labor include:
- Identifying the root causes which force families and communities to allow children to be engaged in labor
- Addressing these underlying issues by interacting with parents, community leaders and children’s collective where the importance of child rights and the damaging effects of child labor are discussed
- Empowering communities with the knowledge to demand for proper implementation of employment schemes, food security and access to all government provisions
- In instances of child trafficking and children forced into labor, Dr M Chandrasekhar International Foundation and grassroots partners work on rescue, repatriation and rehabilitation of children through child protection networks under the Juvenile Justice Care & Protection Act and the Integrated Child Protection Scheme
- Dr M Chandrasekhar International Foundation and its partners work to create and strengthen ‘Children’s Collectives’. These forums create a platform for school-going children to play an important role in influencing children who are out of school to get enrolled/re-enrolled. They are also instrumental in voicing their opinions to parents, panchayats, government bodies and decision makers on issues related to child labor and the need for education.
Donate now and strengthen our efforts of ensuring children go to school, instead of work. Help us help them unlearn those skills which rob them of their childhood.
- Amongst those in child labor, the percentage in global supply chains varies across regions:
- 29 per cent in Eastern and South-Eastern Asia.
- 24 per cent in Latin America and the Caribbean.
- 16 per cent in Central and Southern Asia.
- 18 per cent in sub-Saharan Africa.
- 7 per cent in northern Africa and Western Asia.
- Child labor was more pronounced in domestic production processes than global supply chains, the study suggested.
- Most of the child labor in supply chains is deployed in countries of origin, known as the ‘upstream reaches’ of a chain. This part accounted for 28-43 per cent of the total child labor engaged by the sector.
- According to the report, 97 per cent of the estimated child labor contributing to the export of agricultural goods comes from children working in the agricultural sector itself
- The report also outlines a broader preventive approach focused on root causes, including child and family deprivation, particularly in the upstream and outsourced segments of global supply chains.
- It considers not only the risk factors and policy interventions related to addressing the vulnerability of people but also the unique complexity of global supply chains.
Child work categories:
- Within the family: Children are engaged in domestic household tasks without pay.
- Within the family but outside the home: Example- agricultural laborers, domestic maids, migrant laborers etc.
- Outside the family: Example- commercial shops in restaurants and jobs, prostitution etc
Child Labor Causes:
- Poverty: Due to poverty, parents cannot afford the studies of their children and make them earn their wages from a tender age. They are made to work to increase the income of their poor families at the earliest.
- Lack of educational resources: There are thousands of villages in our country where there are no proper facilities for education. And if there is any, it is miles away.
- Administrative Laxity: Administrative laxity is also responsible for child labor. The worst sufferers are the poor families for whom getting their children educated is a dream.
- Addiction, disease or disability: In many families, due to addiction, disease or disability, there is no earning, and the child’s wages are the sole means of family’s sustenance.
- Rising Population Growth: Population growth is also increasing unemployment, which has an adverse impact on child labor prevention.
- Sexual Exploitation: In 2005, a study was conducted by the National Human Rights Commission of India (NHRC) found that India was fast becoming a source, transit point and destination for traffickers of women and children for sexual and non-sexual purposes.
- Illegal Activities: Children, over adults are often chosen to be trafficked for illegal activities such as begging and organ trade, as they are seen as more vulnerable.
- The lure of cheap labor: In the greed of cheap labor, some shopkeepers, companies and factory owners employ children so that they have to pay less to them and it amounts to employing cheap labor.
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