Monday, June 18, 2012

Bhubaneswar Minor Kasturi pulls out two kids from kilns, enrolls them in school Minor Kasturi pulls out two kids from kilns, enrolls them in school MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2012 22:03 SUDHIR MISHRA | BALANGIR

 Bhubaneswar Minor Kasturi pulls out two kids from kilns, enrolls them in school
MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2012 22:03
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It is common in western Odisha to find thousands of people migrating to Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu in search of jobs, mostly in brick kilns, facing torture in the hands of unscrupulous owners and appealing for rescue. Whatever motivation work is done by those working on migration, usually falls flat on them.
But what has raised eyebrows is the story of a minor girl, Kasturi,  of Tara village of Kapani gram panchyat in Belpada block of this district who succeeded not only in motivating two migrant children but also managing to bring them from brick kilns in Andhra Pradesh and getting them enrolled in school.
“Kshema Majhi and Pabitra had migrated to Andhra Pradesh along with their parents who worked there in brick kilns. After the Village Child Protection Committee discussed about the children  and the facilities offered by an organisation, YCDA, in the village  to ensure education to the orphaned and the left-behind migrant children, and other supports, I decided to convey this message to Kshema and Pabitra who had migrated to Andhra Pradesh along with their parents. I talked to their guardians too. After I spoke,  their guardians were somehow convinced and both of them came back,” said Kasturi Patra.
“After their return from the brick kilns, Kshema has been enrolled in Class III at a local primary school and Pabitra in Class II. Now they are going to school.”
In each village, there is a Village Child Protection Committee and Child Association in the operational villages.
“We have facilitated the process to form Village Child Protection Committee and provided critical understanding on child migration issue, which helps people to take action on child protection. This is also part of the action plan developed by villagers against child migration,” says Rajendra Meher of YCDA.
“The Village Child Protection Committee comprises Anganwadi workers,  SHG members, traditional leader of the village and Ashas. First of all, we carry out an assessment of orphaned children and their condition. After discussion and consultation with them all the data about the migrant children are compiled and a Micro Level Plan (MLP) to ensure their study is prepared. After preparation of the study report, it is submitted to the Child Welfare Committee and only after getting order from the Child Welfare  Committee, necessary assistance is extended.”
“We are extending our support to 40 orphaned children and 32 left-behind children of the migrants in the district. The educational support we extend them includes note books and other items,” said Sunita Tripathy, a member of the child protection committee.
“As a member of the committee, I use to monitor their regular going to  school, their neat-and-cleanliness and regular study besides teaching them dance and music,” said Kasturi Patra who is reading in Class VIII.
Every child has a lot of potential. The hopes of YCDA for children have come true in the case of Kasturi. She has proved her potentialities in the form of persuading two kids from a dungeon and admitting them in a school which may ensure the two children a future. Our input and regular intervention has activated her latent capacity and the realisation in her, said  Sunita.

In Kapani panchyat, the community has also taken a major role for reducing children migration in the panchayat, she added.

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