At our 9 Community Centres in various slums of Kolkata a total of 350 children attend a school preparation course, and after 6 – 12 months we enrol them in local schools. We continue to offer social and academic support through tutoring and recreational activities for these school-going children. There are more than 11 million street-connected children in India, and it is estimated that 120,000 street children are in Kolkata where LittleBigHelp works. Through our work we address some of the underlying reasons for these statistics.
Despite that primary education is compulsory and free in India, many children never attend school and many drop out after only a few years.
40 % drop out of school before reaching class 8. Without support and boundaries at home, many of these children turn to the streets.
On the streets the children are vulnerable and some find acceptance and ‘protection’ in gangs, some earn a little money, and others become addicted to glue. The longer the children have been involved in life on the street and in an addiction, the harder it becomes to help them out of that environment. Lack of education perpetuates the cycle of poverty and their chances of a brighter future.
Our goal is therefore to work with both the local communities as well as the vulnerable children to promote a sustainable development. We will work to prevent even more children from becoming street children and we offer vulnerable children and families support, awareness, health care and education at our LittleBigHelp Community Centres with the goal of improving the whole family’s living conditions.