Report by Suman Rani Tripathy; Brahmapur: After successful implementation of ‘Operation Muskaan’, the police traced missing and destitute children for reunite them with their parents in Ganjam district.
Society for Children(SOCH) with the collaboration of Society for Assistance in Difficulty Situation (SATHI) organized “Family Reunion Event” with the support of district administration, police, railway police RPF, GRPF, Child Welfare Committee (CWC), District Child Protection Unit(DCPU),Ganjam district on the concluding occasion of Operation Muskaan here on today.
SOCH trace 21 children’s homes with the help from the local police in the concerned child’s native place are reunited with their parents today at the event.
On the occasion Nikhil Pavan Kalyan Brahmapur Municipal Commissioner graced the event as Chief Guest announced that a unused night shelter is being constructed by the BMC near to old bus stand. This can be given to the SOCH to utilize it for the purpose of shelter for rescued children.
The main aim of the program was to reunite of rescued children with family to prevent child trafficking and from persons who tried to engage them in begging, sexual trade and other antisocial activities.
‘One in every 11 children in India is working according to the International Labor Organization. Though lawfully banned, child labor is very much prevalent in and around all of us, on streets, in small shops or factories. Not only does this practice rob the children of their innocent childhood days, it makes them hate the society in general’, said Manoj Swain Director SOCH Bhubaneswar.
‘However, Trafficking, unsupportive family backgrounds and deplorable home conditions call for even worse scenarios where children as young as 7 or 8 years have attempted suicide or ran away from home. Yet, only a select few choose to take up the cause of educating these children or letting them pursue their interests for a better future. SOCH & SATHI’s “Family Reunion Event” through its humble initiative to reunite the rescued children under “Operation Muskaan” in this season, said Suman Rani Tripathy program coordinator.
The organization has come forth to help child laborers, missing children, and run away or trafficked kids get better lives through rescue and rehabilitation. The organization includes aiding runaway kids from different districts in Odisha to return to their homes. For the police, GRP,RPF,CWC,DCPU to help these children reach their homes safely and quickly.
The work, however, does not end there. Also keeps track and follows up to find out about these children’s safety and well-being, once they are home. For those who choose to not stay at home, we find out if they have reached a hostel and are staying there. Even thereafter, our concern is to identify the child’s ambitions and what extra we can do to help them. The organization has counseled countless such children and changed their lives for the better.
When such children come to SOCH shelter, they have already faced abuse or child labor and develop detest for the society. Their interest to study dies down by then. We try to inculcate brighter thoughts in them for their future and make them understand how education is important to empower them.
“It believes that only 20 percent of trafficked and working kids are able to escape while the rest go missing. What we want is that in the state, at stations or at bus stops, whoever spots these children working or begging, they should stop them immediately so that they don’t have to undergo further harassment”, Nikhil Pavan Kalyan Brahmapur Municipal Commissioner.
Like many of us, hopes that someday the police and government together will be able to implement stricter laws to eradicate child labor and trafficking from their roots. But, until then, o ur attempts to bring smiles to the little faces, even though at a smaller level, he added.
Under this program, specially trained police teams were screened all children residing in shelter homes, railway platforms, bus stands, roads and religious places. They were also extract required information from these children tactfully in the last Operation Muskaan,he added.