Bengaluru, June 16: BREADS (Bangalore Rural Educational and Development Society) distributed 2000 units of cooked POHA and cookies to migrant families travelling from Bangalore City Railway station to Danapur, Bihar on June 14 and 15. BREADS Bangalore also distributed 2000 units of food and cookies to migrant families travelling from Bangalore to Guwahati in the Shramik train on June14, said Fr Joy N, Director, BREADS.
Fr Joy said BREADS Bangalore was happy to associate with the Karnataka State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (KSCPCR), Good Quest Foundation, Project Vision, Aifo India and Corona Care Bengaluru in reaching out to the tribal colonies in the Nagarahole Forest East belt in Karnataka. A total of 800 families with more than 1800 children were supplied with essential items. The hamlets covered were Nagarahole Forest East belt (Aanaechowkuru aadi, Bamboochowku aadi, Janglaadi), Nagarahole Forest Central reserve area (Ashrama shaala) and Nagarahole Forest West belt (Anthrasante, Maladaadi, Aanaemala aadi, Bavalli aadi). BREADS provided poha, cookies and face masks for all the people in the colonies.
Extending Help to the Last and the Least
Without a reliable way to predict the future with the COVID 19 virus, the lives of the migrant labourers in particular, are unsure. Without assured livelihoods in most of the non-essential sectors, the migrants prefer to go back home to a sense of security. The sad plight of the migrant labourers struggling to get home on foot or by cycle has created a public outcry in the country, forcing the government to make alternative arrangements to send the migrant labourers home safely. The Karnataka government has organised special trains to facilitate the safe return of the interstate migrants from Karnataka.
Migrants from all over the country, lined up in queues in front of police stations, railway stations and in the Palace Grounds (collection of pass and departure point) was a common sight in Bangalore. Waiting with their families in desperate hope for their turn to travel, the migrants were dependent on the goodwill of people and the State, for food and shelter during the waiting period.
On May 27, 2020, BREADS distributed 500 containers of ready-to-eat Upma and cookies in Palace Grounds, Bangalore, to such people waiting for their passes to board trains. These food items were donated by IndiGo through ResponseNet to BREADS.
BREADS expressed gratitude to ResponseNet and IndiGo for their initiative to help the needy in the trying times. It also appreciated all the volunteers who helped in the distribution with their warm-hearted presence and cheerfulness, Fr Joy narrated, explaining the grave situation people faced.
Don Bosco PYaR in Support of the Migrants in Kalaburagi
The recent COVID 19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdowns tremendously impacted the lives of migrant labourers from Chhattisgarh, who had been working in Kalaburagi in construction sites. Their attempts to return to their native state failed due to the strict lockdowns. Fortunately, the lifting of the lockdown and the commencement of train services relieved their pain and they finally were allowed to travel on June 10 from Kalaburagi.
Don Bosco Programme for Young at Risk (PYaR) and BREADS supported 40 migrant labourers with grocery kits when they boarded their train to return home. The food and groceries would ensure that they and their families survived the journey intact while also helping them to survive a few days when they reached home. This timely gesture of DB PYaR was appreciated by the Kalaburagi railway authorities, accoding to some of the officials of BREADS.
BREADS Reaches out to Stranded Labourers in Kolar
Images of the plight of migrant and daily wage labourers during the COVID 19 lockdown, suffering hunger and deprivation due to loss of income, had been reaching BREADS through the media. BREADS and the Don Bosco partners in Kerala and Karnataka had been very active on the ground in seeking out and helping the individuals and families in need. Binu Varghese, State Coordinator of Bachpan Bachao Andolan (BBA) turned to BREADS as a first resort to provide assistance to 72 migrants who were stranded at the Kolar railway station.
On May 13, late in the night, Binu received a call from Srikantha Kumar, Kolar Municipal Corporation Commissioner and Chowdappa, Chairperson, Child Welfare Committee KGF (CWC). The call informed him about 72 people including 21 children below 12 years of age, who hailed from Uttar Pradesh were stranded in Kolar without food, shelter, medicine and other basic needs. They were migrant labourers living with their families in Kolar Gold Fields (KGF) whose lives and daily income had been disrupted by the sudden lockdown due to COVID 19. They reached Kolar railway station hoping to return to their native state only to find that all trains to and from Karnataka had been cancelled. The group was identified by the district administration, that provided them with rations which were only sufficient for a week. Thereafter, they sought external help for the migrants. The BBA coordinator approached BREADS Bangalore for help in handling the situation.
In a coordinated effort, BREADS supported the cost of food supplies for the 72 migrants, while the CWC and Municipal Corporation Kolar saw to the food distribution and their shelter. Since the lack of cooking facilities and equipment was a problem, the supply of cooked meals was arranged under the leadership of Dr. Kadam, the CWC member.
As a result of these interventions, these migrant families including children were provided with nutritious food, tea and snacks. The children received fruits and milk daily. The addition of a few toys added to their joy. The team on the ground also educated the migrants about the prevention of COVID 19. The migrants keenly awaitedthe green signal from both the state governments to allow them to return home.
‘BREADS’ is the Development Organization of the Salesian Province of Bangalore.
The year 2016 witnessed the successful completion of CREAM (Child Rights Education and Action Movement) I, a flagship project of BREADS for the last four years, which made a remarkable paradigm shift from children as mere beneficiaries to children as active agents of social change and active partners in their own development. CREAM I focus on empowerment of children through action and creating children’s movement for social change.
CREAM II is the continuation of the child rights promotion efforts of BREADS with collaborative actions involving children, civil society groups and individuals located in villages and urban areas of 10 districts of Karnataka state. CREAM II is expected to encourage and enhance children’s participation in the development process, to promote child rights and to ensure child care and protection in the project districts. CREAM II will concentrate more on capacity building of different groups/individuals and intensify its advocacy role in child rights promotion and child participation.
The impact and success factors of the structures, systems, capacity building and empowerment process of CREAM I is the pillar as an instrument for advocacy actions.
The official launching of CREAM II was done on July 5, 2016 by Tanvir Sait, Minister of Primary and Secondary Education, Karnataka state. So far, CREAM II achieved remarkable results on empowering the children to identify and prioritise issues relevant to them and enhances the capacity of children, communities and other civil society groups for initiating synergetic actions to uphold child rights and child participation .
Commendable measures have been planned and implemented during year 2016-17 and it has been instrumental in putting all the issues pertaining to child rights on the local as well as district and state level. CREAM II has extensively mobilized actions for the realization of the rights and development of children.
Project CREAM was launched to establish child participation as the key facet of child development. CREAM wants to achieve a high level of child participation in child development, promote child rights and ensure child protection by establishing the appropriate structures and networks in the 10 districts chosen. The key objective is to introduce child rights education in the school curriculum of the State by demonstrating its effectiveness through the project.
Salient Features of the Project
Creating awareness on Child Rights among more than 75000 children in 450 schools, Human Rights Education (HRE) in 450 schools with a reach out of 22500 children, 900 government school teachers to be trained to impart HRE in their respective schools, Formation of more than 450 child rights clubs, Training for all stakeholders (SHGs, Gram Panchayath Leaders, Government Officials, youth, teachers, NGO leaders, etc.) in the community on child rights and Participatory Action Research and Campaigns by children at district and state level.
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