Beads for Baal Dan Program
  • Volunteers participate in beading events to make “mala” bracelets that are in turn sold to raise money for needy children in India.

  • Wednesday, June 3, 2009

  • Facts About India

    Facts About India

    India has over 18 million street children - that is the population of New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Philadelphia combined.

    Source: Government of India, 1991 Census and US City Populations, US Census, 2006

    India has the largest population of street children in the world.

    Source: United Nations Development Program (UNDP), Human Development Report, 1993

    25 million children are orphans

    47% of children under the age of three are malnourished

    26% of the population lives below the income poverty line

    2.2 million die before age 5 every year

    Source: UNICEF State of the World's Children Report

    Street children and India

    "This must one of the few places on earth where the rich try to work off a few pounds in the gym, step outside and are confronted by a barefoot child of skin and bones begging for something to eat."

    Source: Shekhar Kapur, Author, "India Inc.", Time Magazine, 06/26/06

    "In terms of the under-nutrition levels, certainly India is at a much higher level than the average Sub-Saharan African country."

    Source: Werner Schultink, Chief of child development and nutrition for UNICEF in India, February 21, 2007

    "The survey confirms that India has done little for its children... Despite the excellent growth record for which India is getting greater and greater appreciation, efforts are still lacking and progress has been quite tardy in terms of women and children's health and nutrition."

    Source: Shiv Kumar, Development Economist and Adviser to the Indian government


    What is a street child?

    Street children are those for whom the street (in the widest sense of the word, i.e. unoccupied dwellings, wasteland, etc.) more than their family has become their real home, a situation in which there is no protection, supervision, or direction from responsible adults.

    Source: Unicef definition of street children as cited by Nandana Reddy, "Street Children of Bangalore: A Situational Analysis", NOIDA: Government of India, 1992, p. 2

    Street children or orphans can be divided into three main categories:
    1. Children on the Street
    Forming the largest category, these are children who have homes; most return to their families at the end of the day. Most earn a living for themselves and their families by begging or working.
    2. Children of the Street
    These children are a group who have chosen the street as their home and it is there that they seek shelter, livelihood, and companionship. They have occasional contacts with their families.
    3. Abandoned Children
    These children have severed all ties with their families. They are entirely on their own, not only for material survival but also psychologically.

    Source: "Police Abuse and Killings of Street Children in India", Human Rights Watch, Children's Rights Project, November 1996

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