Ranchi, Jharkhand | March | 24, 2021 :: In any metropolitan city or even in tier 2 cities like Ranchi, children selling balloons, pens, toys on the streets or knocking on the windows of vehicles halting at traffic signals has become a common sight. No one knows where they come from, who they are, what is their identity.
But, the capital city of Jharkhand has taken the responsibility of addressing this issue.
The Ranchi administration has entered into an MoU with Rainbow Homes, an NGO which works with and for the street children. Rainbow Homes has operationalised two shelter homes in Ranchi, one for girls and one for boys where they are working on providing a better life to these children.
* From being a victim of drug abuse to one of the brightest students in class
Prakash(name changed), a street kid, used to sleep on footpaths. The administration in cooperation with Rainbow Homes brought him to the shelter established within the campus of government school in Bariatu. His full body check-up was conducted, everything was normal except a low body weight. Primary treatment and a fresh set of clothes were provided to the boy. After a background check, it was found that his father was a drug addict and even Prakash himself has been a victim of drug abuse. Eventually Prakash agreed to make the shelter his home. Today, he is one of the best dancers at the centre, he loves to draw and is doing well in his studies too.
Lalmani (name changed) has a similar story. She used to beg in front of the Pahadi Mandir in Ranchi. Champa, the lead manager at Rainbow Homes, said that Lalmani’s father would snatch away all the money from her every evening to buy drugs. With the support provided by the city administration, Rainbow Homes was able to get her to the shelter where her health has improved and is transitioning into an elegant mannered young lady. She aspires to become an officer .
* Government’s support ensures smooth running of centres despite COVID-19
There are numerous stories of such kind with street kids seeking a hopeful bright future. To run such centres, the government provided funds for civil up-gradation of the buildings. These buildings have access to all the basic amenities like electricity and watery supply, washrooms, and the required kitchen space.
* Food, health check-ups and extracurricular activities make for a happy atmosphere
To impart these children the ability to face this fast-paced world, sound physical and mental health is necessary. Therefore, nutritious food charts are prepared at each centre. The food is cooked in the kitchen at the centre by a ‘home mother’ deputed at the centre. She also looks after the hygiene of every kid. Apart from this, quarterly health check-up camps are organized with the support of District Hospital. During the camp, every kid’s growth chart is prepared, and other necessary check-ups are also conducted. One of the home managers says, “we organize events for every festival. Students take part in extracurricular activities like dancing competition, skit, painting or singing. This helps us improve their confidence and extempore ability.”
* Other support from the government
During March 2020 when the nationwide lockdown was imposed, the Ranchi District Administration provided the centre with chocolates, noodles packets, biscuits, and other necessary food supplies. This ensured stability in terms of centre’s operation even during the hardest times. Recently, as a part of an initiative ‘Mission 01 Million Smile’, the district administration distributed warm clothes like socks, blankets, caps among the children of both the houses. To ensure Menstrual Hygiene Management among girls the centre has also provided sanitary napkins.