Homeless in Dehradun
Dehradun (India) has a vast population of children that its fast economic development has left behind. Without home, education and care, these children roam the streets in search of garbage and handouts. Many children are forced to beg by their own families, themselves without income or home. Because children with disabilities have more begging potential, parents sometimes mutilate their own children. Other children simply abandon their home due to violence and drug abuse by their parents.
The problem is set to worsen in a growing population and a rapidly widening wealth gap between the rich and the poor.
Self-help groups and NGOs, such as the Aasraa Trust by Shaila Brijnath, try to provide a measure of care and education with limited funds and often using personal savings, to help children build a future that is worth living. Their efforts a routinely sabotaged by begging children’s parents who depend on their income. Without an education that is enabling children to enter the job market, it seems impossible to break this spiral.
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