INTERVENTIONS OF DBNJ CENTERS FOR STREET CHILDREN ACROSS ANDHRA PRADESH

        

1. DBNJ – Vijayawada

The Salesians of Don Bosco started working for street children first in Vijayawada, which is the second largest city with a 25,000 street children population. The work was initiated in 1989 at Pezzonipet, which is close to the Vijayawada Railway Station and bus terminus. The municipal corporation leased a piece of land near the station, to run a shelter for the street children. It was the starting point of Navajeevan Bala Bhavan, which today has won the appreciation of the public. The Government of India acknowledged Navajeevan’s rehabilitation service to the street children by granting it the National Award for Child Welfare – 1996. In 1997, the state Government of Andhra Pradesh recognized Navajeevan as a “Fit Institution” under section 13(1) of “The Juvenile Justice Act, 1986”.

With a vision to strive for the creation of a child-friendly society where all the young in difficult situation are ensured of their rights to: non discrimination, best interest of the child, survival, protection, development and participation – as enshrined in the United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of the Child, DBNJ centre at Vijayawada has been rendering commendable works for the street and working children.

Sub Centres of Navajeevan Bala Bhavan are:

  1. Navajeevan Bala Bhavan
  2. (Round the Clock Shelter for Street Children)
    Near Rly. Station, Poornanandampet
    Vijayawada – 520 003, Krishna Dt., AP
    Tel: 0866-2575060

  3. Chiguru – Street Children’s Village
  4. (Housing 4 Group Foster care homes for
    children attending primary education & Reorientation Camps – Prerana & Velugu – for children below 18 years)
    Venkatapalem – Flood Bank Road
    Penumaka P.O., Guntur Dt., A.P.

  5. Vimukthi
  6. (Reorientation Camp for children addicted to substance abuse and hard core street addicted children)
    Navajeevan Gardens
    Ponasanapalli Village
    Nuzvid Mandal, Krishna Dt., AP

  7. Ankitha -– Residential Bridge School for Girls
  8. Sisters Servants of Holy Spirit, Pavithrathma Nilayam, Sikku Temple street, Gurunanak Colony Vijayawada.

  9. Mogga I
  10. (Group Foster Care Home for school going boys)
    RCM Church Back Street, Pezonipet, Vijayawada-3.

  11. Mogga II
  12. (Group Foster Care Home for school going boys)
    RCM Church Campus, Pezonipet, Vijayawada-3

  13. Mogga III
  14. (Group Foster Care Home for school going boys)
    RCM Church Campus, Pezonipet, Vijayawada-3

  15. Mogga IV
  16. (Group Foster Care Home for school going boys)
    RCM Church Campus, Pezonipet, Vijayawada-3

  17. Mogga V
  18. (Group Foster Care Home for school going boys)
    Bethlehem Nagar, Gunadala, Vijayawada-3.

  19. Mogga VI
  20. (Group Foster Care Home for school going boys)
    Manchal Vari Street, Pezonipet, Vijayawada-3

  21. Yuva Bhavan
  22. (Residential Skills Training Center for boys)
    Nadar Street, Pezonipet Vijayawada.

  23. Vruthy Bhavan
  24. (Residence for boy-apprentices after skills training)
    23-3-35, Andhra Ratna road , Bavajipet, , Vijayawada -3

    Focus / Target Group: Children of the street, Working Children, Street youth, Children in Juvenile Homes, Children affected by AIDS, girl children from marginalized communities The significant achievements of the DBNJ centre at Vijayawada are very clear in the number of children it was able to reach out to the needy children.

    The total number of street children registered at the centre [since 1993] – 38755 Present total number of former street and working children and other children in difficult circumstances in various departments of the centre – 1574

2 .DBNJ – Hyderabad

Drawing energy from the successful attempt at Vijayawada, Salesians of Hyderabad Province, wanted to extend the Navajeevan Project, to the city of Hyderabad that as stated before, is the largest city and capital of the state of Andhra Pradesh with a 55,000 street children population. This very large population of street children itself demonstrates amply the gravity of the problem and the acute necessity of their rehabilitation. With a strong determination to reach out to these several children, DBNJ centre had commenced its activities in the year 1999.

A shelter was inaugurated near to Secunderabad Railway Station (Bhoiguda) on 24th April 2001 by the then Home Minister of Andhra Pradesh. Sooner, two more shelters had come up near Hyderabad and Kachiguda Railway Stations. Apart from these shelters we have a Rehabilitation centre at Ramanthapur for vocational training and another centre for bridge school and centre for school going children.

Sub-Centres

  1. Don Bosco Rehabilitation Centre, Pragathi Nagar, Ramanthapur, Hyderabad – 500 013
  2. DB Yuvaniketan, H. No: 6-2-408, New Bhoiguda, Secunderabad – 500 003
  3. Don Bosco Navajeevan, H. No: 11-6-472, Street No. 5, Bazar Ghat, Near Ram Mandir, Nampally, Hyderabad – 500 001
  4. Don Bosco Navajeevan, H. No: 3-2-3/3, Beside Bhadruka College of Commerce, Kachiguda, Hyderabad – 500 027
STREET PRESENCE and Shelter

A Street Presence Team, constituted of seven street educators visit the public places of twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad [mainly Railway stations, Bus stands, public gardens, etc. and establish contact with the children addicted to streets. In the past seven years, the team was able to contact more than 12,500 children in and around Secunderabad, Hyderabad and Kachiguda Railway Stations that have got the highest level of concentration of street children. Out of the total contacted, 3,400 children were placed back home after due counselling just on the street itself. The team also placed 270 students in various jobs.

The following services are being provided at the DBNJ centre
  1. Effective Street Presence team to establish rapport with the children in need/protection
  2. Counselling services and emotional support for the children
  3. Shelter services [food, clothing, residential facilities, etc.]
  4. Advocacy and lobbying services by the staff to protect the rights of street children
  5. Home re-integration [for children, both within and outside the state]
  6. Group dynamics, recreational activities and cultural programs
  7. Non-formal education for the fresh street children

Three Round the clock shelters have been set up very close to the Secunderabad, Hyderabad and Kachiguda Railway Stations. Proximity to the railway station has the advantage that the children have an easy access to the shelter. Easy physical accessibility to the shelter is one of the promoting factors for the children to walk in away from the usual temptations of the street. At the shelter, the children’s basic needs are taken care of. They are given food, medical care, clothes and recreation facilities. There are more than 400 children in all the three shelters at present.

Counselling and Home Re-integration

An effective team of counsellors are placed in the shelters to render counselling services to the children. Many a time, the counsellors contact their parents and prepare them to accept the children back. So far, around 29000 children are successfully united with their families. The staff accompanies the children during repatriation and join them back in their families.

Rehabilitation program

Between the street and rehabilitation, there must be a phase which will help to Re-Motivate effectively the children to give up the “freedom” of the street or ‘street addiction’ and to accept the discipline of rehabilitation either in their own homes–if there is a “home” for the street child to go to–or in various rehabilitation programmes. This phase is called as Re-orientation camp. Counsellors help the child to take a decision to join formal education (schooling) or non-formal vocational training to acquire any of the skills to enable him to stand on his own feet. The rehabilitation center at Ramanthapur, Hyderabad, offers the former street children with various options of vocational trades, viz. carpentry, tailoring, television & radio, air-conditioning and refrigeration mechanic, electrician and plumbing, bakery, etc.). There are 145 boys [between the age group of 15 to 21years] learning various vocational trades. This year around 185 boys are going to local schools at Hyderabad and the rest are undergoing training at Non-formal technical school. There is also ‘DHISHA’ a career guidance and job placement cell for the children at the shelter only.

3 .DBNJ – Vizag

Visakhapatnam, also known as Vizag, is the second largest city in the state of Andhra Pradesh and its natural port, the second busiest in India after Mumbai. Apart from a major Naval Base, Visakhapatnam is also a major industrial center in India today. The largest shipyard in the country, an efficient port trust, a modern steel plant and other major heavy industries, such as, Bharat Heavy Plates & Vessels, Hindustan Zinc, Visaka Oil Refinery, Hindustan Polymers, Dredging Corporation of India (DCI), Coromandal Fertilizers, etc. are all located here. Moreover, it has a rather large fishing harbour, around which there is a high concentration of fish-workers’ communities.

The Visakhapatnam city itself has population of more than 1,512,000, which is 7.37% of urban population of the State of Andhra Pradesh. It ranks 5th population wise when compared to the other districts of Andhra Pradesh. The DBNJ had conducted a survey in the year 2000 along with the University students of Post graduate Social Work. The survey brought to lime light that there were nearly 5000-5500 street children alone apart from the working children. As there are several companies, industries and commercial complexes, many of the children are made use of in those establishments, while several roam in Railway station; others take up rag picking, begging, scavenging, rail cleaning, etc. With the objective of reaching out to such less fortunate children, DBNJ had commenced its activities in the year 2000 onwards. Recently it had also started its own rehabilitation center at Sabbavaram, 25 km away from the city of Vizag.

Sub-centres

1. Beach Blossom School, Jalaripeta, Fishing Harbour, Visakhaptnam, A.P.

2. Don Bosco Skill Training Centre, Cathedral Street, Visakhaptnam, A.P.

3. Bosco Home, 32-17/1 Sivalayam Street, Bowdara Road, Visakhapatnam-530 004

4. Bosco Illu, Devipuram, Sabbavaram Mandal, Visakhapatnam District, A.P.

Shelter

DBNJ shelter [situated near the Railway station] is always open to receive street children, child labourers, drug addicts, orphans and other young at Risk. Presently there are 35 children in shelter. The Street Presence staff contact children at Railway station, Bus stands, Market places, Beach and Fishing harbour and motivate them for better life by availing the services provided at shelter. The staff is continuing ongoing rapport with 120 children in various public places in the city.
The following services are provided by the DBNJ at Vizag
First contact and ongoing contact through effective Street Presence Shelter services [food, clothing, residence, etc.]
Counselling and emotional support to the street addicted children
Medical care and support
Recreation and group activities and Motivational camps
Home Re-integration
Motivation to save money
Re-orientation and Rehabilitation Formal & Non-Formal Education. After a short period of stay at the children are placed in Rehabilitation centre if they are orphans or abandoned or if the child is not in a position to rejoin the family. At the Rehabilitation centre at Sabbavaram, the children are sent to formal schools.
Total number of beneficiaries from the beginning: 1650 children

Beach Blossoms School:

This is a Bridge School program undertaken by DBNJ center in collaboration with the State Government to motivate and mainstream the school dropouts back to schooling. As a closed group, the fisher folk community has high prevalence of illiteracy. To arrest their children from becoming illiterates and drop away from schools, such initiative by the DBNJ center is highly appreciative. So far the staff was able to put back 89 children into formal government schools. Presently there are about 99 children attending the Bridge school. There is also a tuition program in the evening hours for these children of fisher-folk. If these children are uncared for, one is sure to find them on the streets, with no one to care for them.

Vocational Training Centre:

The Vocation training center also forms as Rehabilitation center, besides rendering services to the needy local poor youth [boys and girls]. At present there are courses like, Computer education, Beauty parlour, Tailoring, embroidery. 90% of the children belong to fisher-folk community. So far 125 members were trained in Computer course, 135 are trained in Tailoring and embroidery, 95 are trained in Beautician course and 25 are trained in R & A.C.

Rehabilitation Center at Devipuram:

There are 71 children in Devipuram rehabilitation center who are sent from shelter. These children attend regular school in sabbavaram. 24 children are studying in English medium, 42 children are studying in Telugu medium and while other children are in preparation to go to school. All the children are aged between 6 to 15 years of age.

4 .DBNJ – Ongole

Ongole is the District Head quarters of Prakasam District. This is one of the most backward districts of Andhra Pradesh. The geographical area of Prakasam District is 17,626 Sq.Km. The total population in the District is about 30,35,082. About 21% of the total population is scheduled caste and 4% scheduled tribe. Only about 38.05% of the population is literate.

On the invitation of the Bishop of Nellore Diocese, the Salesians of Hyderabad Province commenced their work in the year 2000 with a short survey on the conditions of street children, status of child labourers and analysis of child trafficking. As it is widely known and as several research studies have shown that the coastal areas are highly prone to HIV/AIDS spread, the survey had revealed that 60 street children out of 110 respondents had acquired HIV infection. The street children take up activities like, rag picking, begging, bogey cleaning, work in tea stalls, scavenging, shoe polishing, etc. The survey also brought to limelight regarding the high prevalence of child labourers in the town.

It was also revealed that most children come on to the streets unable to cope with the hardships, turmoil, the stark reality of deprivation of food and love in their large, poor, rural families. Children of drunken fathers, deserted mothers, beaten tormented and driven out of their homes / villages for petty stealing, quarrels, come looking for a way out – for a break from hurt, pain and hunger. They come by trains, buses, Lorrie’s trucks and trailers, hitch hiking and even walking.

In this regard, the DBNJ center at Ongole has been resolutely rendering reaching out to street children, child labourers and the school dropout poor children. It is approximately estimated that there are more than 3500 street children in this town and more than 10,000 child labourers with 60% being girl child labourers. Most of the child labourers found in this area, work in the slate industry, beedi industry, carrying the waste out of the quarries, nailing wooden frames, tobacco pressing etc.

Total number of beneficiaries catered to 12000 children approximately

The staff of DBNJ visits daily the railway station, public gardens, dumping waste areas, bus stands, etc. and establishes contact with the children. Once the children are motivated, they are accompanied friendly to the shelter, so that their basic needs are met in a dignified manner. At present there are 35 children in the shelter. The following services are being provided by the center at Ongole:
Street Presence to establish ‘Child Safety Net’ for both street and working children Counselling services and render emotional support Shelter services [food, clothing, residence, etc.] Medical facilities, both major and minor sicknesses Referral services [job placement, vocational training courses] Rehabilitation program
At the Rehabilitation center of DBNJ, the counselling services are continued to be provided, family re-integration would take place if the child is in a position to rejoin the family back [both within the state and out of the state]. Those children, who could not make it to their homes, would stay back at the rehabilitation center and take up either formal education or non-formal education. Formal studies would mean the regular school programme. Non-formal education would mean skill trades like Carpentry, Tailoring, Electrician, welding and two wheeler mechanism. Once they complete the training they go out to the town to get more experience and slowly they get job outside in the trade they have learned.
At present, the number of boys at the rehabilitation centre is:
Working Boys 5 [doing job outside, aged more than 18 years], High school boys are 10, Elementary School boys are 8, Carpentry are 7, Tailoring boys are 8, Electrician boys are 6, and those learning Two wheeler mechanism are 5.
N.B: The DBNJ at Ongole has been able to generate independent sources of finances to reach out to the children in need of care and protection. They have been able to generate local resources also.

5 .DBNJ – Kurnool

Don Bosco Navajeevan at Kurnool is a child friendly center, started in June 2004 in the district of Kurnool for street children, child labourers and youth at risk. It is run by the Salesians of Don Bosco and other collaborators who share our vision of the society in which children do not have to bear the burdens of deprivation and unhappiness.

Committed to its mission of becoming a resource center that makes a difference in the lives of marginalized children, Don Bosco Navajeevan seeks and reaches out to the neglected children, through its program of street presence, Counselling and shelter, providing basic needs, literacy, recreation and medical aid. It is also reaching out to children at risk in slums, to prevent their further marginalization. Its vision statement is “Ray of Hope in the Lives of the Young at Risk”.

Total number of children being reached out is 504

DBNJ Services for street children

DBNJ at Kurnool is presently rendering Street presence services, meeting the basic needs of children at the shelter, imparting non-formal education through group dynamics, picnics, craft making, games, gardening, cultural programs, etc., The work with youth at risk is gaining momentum and greater acceptance as a definite and integral part of the Salesian mission in our province. Today we extend our services to the marginalized youth in AP, especially in the region of Rayalaseema: they are
Shelter for the street children
Rehabilitation center for children
Technical School to the young at risk
Empowerment of the Sikari community
Kindly Note: DBNJ center at Kurnool has taken up this intervention for the cause of street children to ensure a better life although they squarely suffer from absence of funds, trying to manage from the little savings from Technical School. The noble intervention of reaching out to the ‘less fortunate’ children really stands in need of financial support, so that the efforts could be intensified, work be efficient and reach out to more number of children in the town.

6 .DBNJ – Guntur

Don Bosco Navajeevan at Guntur, belonging to the Salesian society of Don Bosco was founded in the year 2002 with the sole purpose of reaching out to the children in difficult situations especially the street children. We have four people working for the children two field staff, one counsellor and the director.

Nearly 100 trains pass through the town every day making Guntur, a habitat for several run away/lost children to get addicted to street life and cultivate deviant behaviour. A survey conducted in 2002 had revealed that there are nearly 250 street children [either lost/run away] in the town. This had resulted in the establishment of a shelter for street children at Bangarala Bedu, near Guntur Railway station. The children are provided with food, clothing, shelter, medical attention and counselling. As the shelter is situated closer to the railway station it is easy for the staff to contact the children and also for the children to contact approach the shelter. At present we have 15 children staying in the shelter. There are 6 more boys who go for work and come back to the shelter after their work. There are 5 children in the shelter who are undergoing skill training. Rest of the children visit the shelter off and on and the number varies from day to day.

In the year 2005, a rehabilitation centre for the former street children was established at Chandramouli Nagar of Guntur Urban. There are also a variety of vocational trades for poor children from various parts of the state; where in the Former Street children could be accommodated as part of their rehabilitation process. Various vocational trades at DBNJ Guntur are viz. Printing Press, Motor Mechanics, Driving, Tailoring, Fitter and Turner, Electric wiring, Carpentry, etc. The children are also offered good facility for regular education both formal and non-formal. They are also given regular counselling, life coping skill and skill training. We have sixteen children in the rehabilitation centre. Twelve of them are going to school, two of them are going to junior college and two of them are undergoing skill training.

There are two staff to visit railway station, bus stand, market places, and hotels and in some commercial centres and establish rapport with the street children or children in need. Counselling would be followed by motivating the boy for mainstream life.

The following services are being offered to the street children at the shelter:

  • Contact the street children in various public places of Guntur and establish rapport
  • Shelter services, viz. food, clothing, residence
  • Counselling services for the street children
  • Home integration after due counselling
  • Rehabilitation program for former street children
  • Kindly Note: The DBNJ center at Guntur suffers from lack of independent sources of money. They are forced to pool little financial sources from the Boys’ Boarding home to really reach out to the increasing number of street children. Lack of financial resources would severely affect the work; hence the center stands in need of financial support. Total number of beneficiaries: 200 approximately

    7 .DBNJ – Warangal

    DBNJ center at Warangal is a home for the street and working children. Most of these children hail from poor and working families. A short survey conducted in 2003 to generate figures regarding the number of street children, their socio-economic background and the works, which they involve in, it was revealed that there were nearly 350 to 500 children in the towns of Warangal, Kazipet and Hanmakonda [the three towns are situated with a single digit number distance from each other in sequence]. Street children either get down from the trains or run away from the nearby rural villages, it was estimated that nearly 200 trains pass through these three cities daily. The children also belonged to local Schedule Castes and Tribal people, who are economically very poor. The center was started in the year 2004.

    There are a two staff, who visit street children in Railway station, Bus stands, public gardens and places and establish rapport with them, so that the children confide in them. After a strengthen relationship and counselling, they are attracted to shelter, where they are offered food, clothing, shelter, cultural and recreational facilities. At present there are 30 children in the shelter and the following services are provided to them:
    Meeting Basic needs of the street children [food, clothing and residential facilities]
    Counselling services by the staff
    Home integration of the runaway boys
    Group activities and Camp programs
    Rehabilitation services at the Boarding, School and ITI [Industrial Technical Institute] at
    Mariapuram, 20 km away from Warangal.

    There are nearly 40 boys who attend the regular English medium schooling, staying in the Boarding and few others are sent for ITC. There is ongoing contact with 50 street children in Railway and Bus stations. The staff readily attends the missing child requests from parents or relatives of the lost/run away children.

    As part of the rehabilitation process, there are various trades in the ITI, viz. Carpentry, Motor Mechanics, Tailoring, Embroidery, Driving, welding, etc. which are being used by both the poor students from the local villages and also the former street children. There are 150 boys in the ITI. Recently DHISHA, a career guidance and job placement cell has been opened for the benefit of the boys to be job placed.

    Kindly Note: The DBNJ center at Warangal with two staff members making themselves available for all the above mentioned services for the street children, are in dire need of some independent financial sources. At present their salaries are being met from the savings of ITI or the School. As the number of street children in the three towns is on the rise, financial support is a fundamental requirement for the center to deliver in effect for the cause of the street children.

    Total number of children: 1045

    8 .DBNJ – Rajamundry

    Rajamundry is one of the nine Municipal Corporations in Andhra Pradesh [with a population more than 15,00,000 city dwellers.] It is termed as a commercial town with various business transactions in cloth manufacturing, usage of coconut by-products, fish marketing and various cash crops. As there are several poor people around the city, children lost/run away are found in large numbers as truants.

    Realising the urgent need to reach out to the children in need, DBNJ center was started in 2002 March in Rajahmundry. The survey conducted in 2002 had revealed that there would be nearly 700 to 800 street children in the city urban premises alone. Nearly 60% of them were marked as HIV positive children. The street children engage themselves in working Tea stalls, cleaning rail bogeys, pity thefts, rag picking, cleaning public toilets. The street children between the age group of 7-11 years were surveyed to be more.

    With an effective strategy of reaching out to these children in need, the DBNJ center has taken up Street Presence with two full time staff members. They visit several places, like -Railway Station, Main Bazar, Godavari Station, Puskarghat, Kambal Tank, KG. Center, KB. Stand, and RTC. Complex, where the children are expected to roam and make their living. The staff establishes rapport and motivate them to visit DBNJ shelter near the Railway station. The following services are being rendered to the street children:
    Street Presence to establish contact with the children
    Counselling services
    Shelter services [food, clothing and shelter]
    Home Integration of the runaway /lost children after due counselling.
    Rehabilitation program at Ravulapalem town [availing Don Bosco School and Boarding facilities]. The Senior street children [above 15 years of age] are referred to other DBNJ centres in the State to take up Vocational Trades.
    Total number of children reached out: 11000 children approximately

    Kindly Note: The center from the beginning has been suffering from lack of independent sources of finances, which if not attended to at the earliest, would squarely cost the interventions for children. The center stands in need of financial support.

    Sep, 28 2015

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    Aug, 24 2015

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    Aug, 01 2015

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    Jul, 08 2015

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    May, 21 2015

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    Apr, 14 2015

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    Apr, 09 2015

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    Mar, 30 2015

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    Mar, 24 2015

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