India currently has a population of close to 1.3 billion people. With UNICEF figures showing more than 20 million orphan children within this country, it probably has the highest number of worldwide orphans. However, such figures are distinctly missing in concrete data. However, some private Non-Government Institutes have undertaken some research work and some concrete data has developed in a few geographical locations.
What creates the need?
• India is home to more than 20 million children which is 4% of the total population, who are orphaned, without permanent families and live in difficult circumstances
• India is probably the highest risk country in the world for children, especially those who are without a home and a family
• Poverty is one of the main factors that contribute to orphancy of children
• India has the highest population of children below the age of 18 — 41% of the total population. Although over 4% of them are orphan as per a study, around 13% of them live with either of their parent.
• The only good news is that the overall estimation of orphan children in percentage terms is expected to fall by 2021 although their number will increase from present 20 million to a staggering 24 million
• A break up of the country shows that there are estimated 3 million orphans in the North, 3.6 million in the South, 2.2 million in the West, 5.6 Million in the East, and an astronomical 6.8 million in the Central zone of India. Only a few find families, even fewer find residential institutions for care; a majority of them are living in unknown conditions
• With limited residential facility, it is estimated that current institutions are over capacity by 35 to 40% as there are no other options for caring for such abandoned children
• Institutionalized children are at high risk of neglect, physical and sexual abuse, and being emotionally scarred for life
• Institutionalized children most often suffer from lack of emotional balance, inability to function independently in society, and often, end up making the wrong choices for life such as drugs, criminal activities or others, which make them difficult to fit and be accepted by society
What is Kinship care?
Kinship care is a very important structure of the extended family through living grandparents or relatives who may be able to provide for the care of the child. At least 30 to 40% of orphaned children (not confirmed), would have some form of extended family available who could be motivated to care for their kin – the orphan child.
Since 2016 we have been working in the community and with the Government to assist children at such risk of being abandoned or institutionalized. Today we have more than 60 children under support, and the list is growing. Unfortunately we have limited financial resources to support such children and their extended family to care for the children.
Help bring Lasting change for a child
We need your help to reach and support more children to stay with their families – single mothers, grand parents or relatives. There is no better place for a child than its own family, and an institution may not be the best place for anyone. If you feel strongly feel motivated and committed to bringing change for such children write to us.