15-year-old Anand works towards preventing children from dropping out in his school
Anand lives with his family in the Mangla, a small forest village in Karnataka. Both his parents work as daily wage farm laborers.
In spite of their bad financial condition, they send Anand to school hoping for a better future.
Anand's father and his uncle were in a dispute about the ownership of their ancestral land. This land fell in the Tiger reserve area. Due to this, the state has restricted the agricultural activity in the area. This led to further tensions. On one unfortunate day, the brothers resorted to physical violence. In this confusion, Anand's father was jailed for 2 and half months. He was later released when found not guilty.
Anand however was badly affected by his father's imprisonment. He dropped out of school in the middle of class 10.
It was then that the Bal Panchayat and the Community Social worker of Bal Mitra Gram visited his home. They counselled the family about the importance of the education. They motivated him to go back to school. They also encouraged him to work towards making a change about issues that affect his school and community.
This resulted in a great change in Anand's behavior. He returned to school. He become the Bal Panchayat Vice President of his Bal Mitra Gram (BMG).
He is very empathetic towards children who drop out of school. There is very high level of unemployment in these areas. The low quality of life in these areas often lead to children dropping out of school.
To combat this, Anand wrote a letter to the Gram Panchayat for effective implementation of National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGA) with the guidance of a social worker.
He also wrote to the Panchayat Development Officer for timely release of funds.
The Gram Panchayat accepted his request and started providing employment locally and also started releasing funds on time.
This brought results and the retention rate of children in school rose up.
Anand is not only a brilliant student but also a good volleyball player. He aspires to become a police officer. He hopes to use his power and authority to voice out the injustice and bring a positive change in his community.
Anand, for sure would have been a lost cause without the guidance of KSCF's Bal Mitra Gram.
Your help can make many more children like Anand find their inherent talents. You can donate so that the foundation can provide Bal Mitra Gram services in many more villages and help many children become contributing members of a the society. You can give with confidence because every program listed is GIVEASSURED.
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What the beneficiary gets
Kailash Satyarthi Children's Foundation (KSCF) have set up Bal Mitra Gram (BMG) or Child Friendly Village concept is a grassroots transformation and child centric process that empowers a child and the village community he lives in to understand and protect their own rights
Bal Mitra Gram (BMG) model is essentially a preventive and curative strategy aimed at eliminating the violations of child rights.
It works towards resolving children's issues by empowering them and facilitating village development as a whole. It is a comprehensive approach towards sustainable development as it encapsulates the mobilization and empowerment of the entire village by ensuring participation of children and the community.
The objective of a BMG is to proactively guide the process of empowerment over 3 years of time period until it becomes self-sustainable on resolving children's issues and facilitating rural development.
During this process, all the different groups of children, youth, women, elders, influencers and elected village council officials start listening to each other, start respecting each other, start recognizing the critical issues which hampers the progress of marginalized communities in the village.
The participation of community is ensured through various stakeholders Group like Youth Group and Women Group. The participation of children themselves is extremely significant which is ensured by forming democratic institution like Bal Panchayat (Children Parliament) which serves as an effective tool to influence the decision making process and ensures the participation of children at the micro level.
Gender equality is at the core of functioning of Bal Panchayat. Under Right to Education Act, 2009 every child has the right to free and compulsory education of eight years from the age of 6 years to 14 years. BMG envisions a process where all children below the age of 14 years are withdrawn from work and subsequently enrolled in school, learning outcomes enhanced through remedial classes.
The uniqueness of the BMG initiative lies in active participation of the village children in creating a legitimate democratic space for themselves in Panchayats, communities, schools and families.
BMG works for child rights at the grassroots level. It works towards solving the deep rooted problem of child labour and creating a demand and value for good education as a village pride.
It addresses issues pertaining to children's rights like eradication of child labour, missing children, child trafficking, child marriage and enforcing the right to education. BMG also empowers the communities to collectively demand and pressurize the local government institutions to facilitate the smooth access to their entitlements.
It facilitates the communities to collectively solve many other issues like maternal and child health, gender equality, rainwater harvesting, re-afforestation, safe drinking water, sanitation etc. through leverage the benefit from existing government schemes.
Currently BMG has 16 years?of experience implementing in 6 States Bihar, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh in India. A total of 570 BMG's have been established out of which 137 are active in April 2018. BMG program has directly reached to over 200000 children through its activities.
When you donate to this program, you help Kailash Satyarthi Children's Foundation help the underprivileged children and youth. Your donation can help these children make a better life for themselves and well as for their villages.
Kailash Satyarthi Children s Foundation
30 September, 2021
Help children in rural areas to fight for their rights
Activities and work undertaken in the last 5-6 months
- Liasoning with Block Educational Officer:In Karnataka, the BMG team and Bal Panchayat members met with Block Education Officer (BEO) to apply for children’s access to additional ration (grocery). The state government announced this additional ration to the children to meet their nutrition requirements amidst the pandemic and lockdown. The child leaders submitted a list of 45 children who were not receiving this additional support from the government. The BEO processed the children’s application immediately, and 45 children received the ration support. 2. Training of Bal Panchayat members in KarnatakaBMG team organised a training session for the Bal Panchayat members to prepare them for delivering their duties. This was the initial training session; therefore, the emphasis was on building their confidence to work for the children and larger communities. The members were taught about the roles and responsibilities of Bal Panchayat, how to conduct meetings, encourage the participation of the members, how to engage with the communities, children and gram panchayat members. All 88 members received the training. There will be more follow-up and handholding sessions for the child leaders to hone their skills and develop them as real change-makers. 3. Liasoning with Head Master of school regarding reading material:IN Karnataka, the BMG team and Bal Panchayat members met with the school headmaster of Hangla Panchayat and asked them to distribute the reading materials which include books and other stationery materials to the children. The state government announced this provision to the children to meet their education requirements amidst the pandemic and lockdown. The child leaders submitted a list of books and children list who haven’t received books. The headmaster provided the books and uniforms to 78 children of Hangla Panchayat.
Challenges faced and next steps
Challenges:- The restriction and guidelines issued by the governments in the light of the COVID-19 second wave pandemic affected the smooth implementation of the programme. The schools were closed in the reporting period due to which the implementation of the school focused activities was kept on hold.- The reporting period covers the monsoon season, which witnessed heavy rainfalls in the project villages. The continuous rain and subsequent blockage of roads/transportation facilities delayed field activities.Mitigation: - Online platforms and one on one calls were conducted to track the COVID 19 situation and child protection challenges in the respective community.- Community-based intervention was executed once the COVID 19 lockdown was relaxed in the intervention area. - Community-based WhatsApp groups were formed and are used to spreading the COVID 19 and child protection related information at each BMGs.Goal/Aim/Activity plan for next 6 months:- Identification and Child labour withdrew.- Enrollment campaigning in the communities.- Community participation meetings to ensure children are in school.- Vaccination awareness drives. - Awareness campaign against child marriage in small groups especially led by the youth group and Bal panchayat.- Menstrual health management training with adolescent girls.- Formation of Bal Panchayat. - Advocacy with the government for access to entitlements (Welfare schemes of government)
Stories from the ground
Impact story from the ground:In Karnataka, the Bal Panchayat members identified that two children had been irregular to school and online classes for some time. One case was in Melukammanahalli, where Ajit (name changed) has been irregular in school. When the Bal Panchayat found out that Ajit did not collect his reading materials from the school, they decided to visit Ajit in his home and find the fact. Ajit belongs to a lower background family where his father and mother works as daily wage labourers. His family got migrated to Tamil Nadu in search of work in August. Along with the family, he also migrated due to which he got dropped out of school. He was irregular to school for five months which the Bal Panchayat identified, and raised with the activist.Further, it was confirmed with the teachers. The teachers and the activist and Bal panchayat visited his grandmother's home and requested her to call back Ajit to her place. Once he returned, the Bal Panchayat and activist went to his home and counselled his parents and grandmother. After regular visits, he was encouraged to go to school. Now he is regularly going to school and studying in 6th standard. Similarly, in Maghuvinahalli, Diya (name changed) dropped out of school. Diya was living in Tamil Nadu where she studied till the 2nd standard. After some years of her father's demise, the family migrated back to Maguvinahalli. Since then, she was not admitted to the school as she could not study in Kannada medium. The Mahila Mandal and Bal Panchayat identified the case.Further, discussed the case in the meetings with the activist, and took up the case to Block Education Officer. The request was made her admit to In Karnataka; the Bal Panchayat members identified that two children had been irregular to school and online classes for some time. One case was in Melukammanahalli, where Ajit (name changed) has been irregular in school. When the Bal Panchayat found out that Ajit did not collect his reading materials from the school, they decided to visit Ajit in his home and find the fact. Ajit belongs to a lower background family where his father and mother works as daily wage labourers. His family got migrated to Tamil Nadu in search of work in August. Along with the family, he also migrated due to which he got dropped out of school. He was irregular to school for five months, which the Bal Panchayat identified and raised with the activist.Further, it was confirmed with the teachers. The teachers and the activist and Bal panchayat visited his grandmother's home and requested her to call back Ajit to her place. Once he returned, the Bal Panchayat and activist went to his home and counselled his parents and grandmother. After regular visits, he was encouraged to go to school. Now he is regularly going to school and studying in 6th standard. Similarly, in Maghuvinahalli, Diya (name changed) dropped out of school. Diya was living in Tamil Nadu where she studied till the 2nd standard. After some years of her father's demise, the family migrated back to Maguvinahalli. Since then, she was not admitted to the school as she could not study in Kannada medium. The Mahila Mandal and Bal Panchayat identified the case.They discussed the issue with the activist and took the case up to the Block Education Officer. The request was to admit her to a bridge course in Hangla School to learn the Kannada language. The BEO approved her admission, and a special class is being provided to her and is now studying in the 5th standard. She is keen to learn and doing good in her studies. The Bal Panchayat members are also helping her to understand the language. In both cases, Bal Panchayat intervened, met the children's parents, and convinced them to send the children back to school.
23 March, 2021
Ensuring education in the times of pandemic
Peer support for education: Nationwide lockdown to prevent the spread of contagious COVID-19 virus resulted in prolonged closure of schools across the country. BMG children in Karnataka initiated to collect textbook from the students who passed the examination and distributed them amongst the children who are going to attend the respective classes. Around 30 children from 8 BMGs in Karnataka got benefited the book collection initiative.
Support to prepare for board examination of class 10th and 12th: Students of class 10th and 12th has been supported to prepare for the board examination. The team facilitated peer learning, telephone discussions and shared notes for helping each other. In total, 102 children (10th standard: 58 children and 12th standard: 44 children) gave the final examination. Out of 102 children, 100 children passed the final exam successfully.
Library setup in 5 schools of Karnataka:
To encourage the reading learning habit among the children library setup was done in 5 (Primary: 2 Upper Primary: 1, Secondary School: 2) schools in Karnataka BMG. The book clubs are formed and the Bal Panchayat members manage the library and book club in each village. Around 2000 children of the community got benefitted from the library in five schools.
Wall writing in BMGs:
Wall writings across the BMGs to promote the programme visibility and disseminate messages on child protection was done in all the 8 BMGs in which around 70 wall writings were written.
Home-based learning: To support education continuity during the pandemic, BMG team and stakeholders’ groups came together to support the children to continue education from home, in Karnataka BMG. The BMG team distributed worksheets of English, Hindi, Mathematics, Kannada for primary school children. Total of 1400 children supported to keep the learning process alive; even the schools were closed.
Training of Bal Panchayat member on child abuse and Protection of Children from Sexual Offence Act, 2012 (POCSO)
During the period of lockdown and post lockdown, the cases of child abuse had increased alarmingly across the country. A one- day training session held in which 17 bal panchayat members of Karnataka on child abuse.
World Day Against Child Labour: Pledge to End Child labour by 2025: In this campaign, Bal Panchayat members, children and community members pledged to eradicate all forms of child labour form the villages by 2025. In total, 105 community members pledged.
5 July, 2020
The influencers and shapers of our community
The influencers and shapers of our community
Some highlights we would like to share with you are as follows -
Formation of Bal Panchayat: The Bal Panchayat (Children Council) formed in all project villages of Hangala Panchayat. The election for selecting the child representatives conducted in September 2019, in which 925 children participated under the leadership of then Bal Panchayat which was later dissolved. The candidates submitted a nomination to a steering committee (led by children) which, after the scrutiny allocated a symbol for each child. Following the acceptance of the nomination, the candidates developed manifesto (individually) and did propaganda amongst other children in the villages. After the election, a new 11 member Bal Panchayat was successfully formed in each village. The village panchayat later recognized the Bal Panchayat which approves both works together for child protection in the villages.
Vaccination and Nutrition Campaign: The BMG promotes child health care in the intervention villages which includes, health camps, awareness generation etc. As part of this, a vaccination camp was organised in the schools with the support of Primary Health Care Centers to facilitate vaccination of the children. In total, 155 children had vaccinated against many diseases. Following this, a nutrition camp had conducted in which 220 mothers received information on nutritious food habit, its requirements and how to make practice healthy food with locally available resources. Further, as part of the campaign, 217 children had undergone general health check-up including vision test.
Human Chain against Missing children: On the occasion of Children’s Day, a campaign conducted to build awareness on the issue of missing children and trafficking. A human chain of 350 children from Bal Panchayat and other schools demanded actions to recover the missing and trafficked children.
Girl Child Day celebration: On the occasion of International Girls Child Day, an awareness rally organized at Hangla Panchayat. “The girls march to school” demanded free and compulsory education till the age of 18 years. The march witnessed community members and stakeholder groups along with 200 children.
Training of Bal Panchayat Members: The newly elected Bal Panchayat members received training on the various theme such as leadership, the role of Bal Panchayat, how to protect the peers, how to work with the Village panchayat and other stakeholders’ groups such as women groups, youth groups etc. They had oriented on how to perform like a vigilante group and adhere to the principle of participation in their activities.
19 November, 2019
Children actively participating in activities and sessions pertaining to individual rights
Children actively participating in activities and sessions pertaining to individual rights
22 July, 2019
The BMGTM programme is a preventive and curative strategy to secure children’s right through the formation of democratic institution called Bal Panchayat which serve as a vigilant group in identifying issues of children. Different activities are conducted to meet the vision and goal of the programme:
1.Monthly meeting: Formed stakeholder groups(Youth/Women/B.P) meet once in a month to discuss children/community issues and set an accountability to address such issues.
2.Sports Activity: Inter BMGTM sports competition and activities were conducted in which 200 youth/children participated.
3.Awareness generation: Rallies and events were organised to create awareness about different child issues and on different thematic issues. A human chain was formed against child trafficking by the children of BMGTMs.
Next quarter Plan:
1.Awareness Rally on Anti Child Marriage.
2.School enrollment drives.
3.Monthly meeting of stakeholder groups.
Story from the field
Pavana, is one of the member of National level Bal Panchayat who initiated a state level Bal Panchayat meeting with 11 children from Bal Mitra Grams. The agenda of the meeting is to encourage the members to participate in the Special Children’s Parliament organised by the Government of Karnataka. Also to raise issues of children in front of the Chief Minister. Pavana discussed about democratic values and came up with major issue like forced migration due to which children get dropped out of school.
Due to the meeting and discussion Suchitra who is a member of State Level Bal Panchayat member represented and voiced out concerns in front of Chief Minister (CM) in Bangalore. She raised concerns about forced migration, which results in many children dropping out of school. The CM acknowledging Suchitra’s concern assured that he will circulate a notice to all the Panchayats in the state, stressing upon the importance of MNREGA and ask parents to find employment in their own villages.
The child leadership and participation is one of the core component of BMG which have its ripple effect due to which children participate and encourage everyone to voice out their issues at a larger scale.
|What is the expected total number of beneficiaries in this program for FY18-19?||1124|
|What is the number of beneficiaries/ benefits provided in this program, Year-To-Date||1124|
|Village/City/State where project is located||Gundlupet Block, Chamrajnagar district, Karnataka|
|Total Budget for the project for FY18-19||500000|
|Total Expenses for the project YTD||500000|