With more than 18 million kids living in the streets, India has the highest concentration of street children in the world. The children are malnourished; they receive no formal education or medical treatment and they are involved in child labour from an early age. Many are vulnerable to being trafficked, forced into child prostitution, drug trafficking or begging to earn an income for their exploiters.
We are currently working with the Salaam Baalak Trust, an organization that provides safe housing, couselling, education, and support for over 5000 children in Delhi. Your donation will support the local organizations five safe homes in New Delhi. Funds will be used to provide scholarships for youth in trade schools, universities and seeking job placements, as well as resources the shelters need such as the food program. You can also support this project by participating in the City Walk while in Delhi, on one of the G Adventures India trips.
It is estimated that 400,000 children live and work on the streets of Delhi. In most cases, their families are too poor to provide for them, they have run away from abusive home environments or they are orphans. Planeterra’s New Delhi Streetkids Project supports over 5,000 of these street children through strategically placed contact points, shelters and a health post set up by a local partner organization. These youth centers provide clothing, food, healthcare, education, counseling, recreational activities, job skills training and job placements.
Through Planeterra’s partnership with Salaam Baalak Trust, scholarships are made available to young people who once lived and worked on the streets of Delhi. By funding vocational training in trade schools and universities, and making job-placements based on each child’s individual interest, we can help break the cycle of poverty and give these youth the opportunity to create a brighter future.
Many of these adolescents have been fully-trained as tour guides and lead exciting tours through the enchanting inner city streets of Paharganj, the New Delhi railway station, and The Old City. This tour is a unique way for travelers to engage in these children’s lives and the guiding provides an opportunity for them to improve their communication and speaking skills.