The Curse of Child Labour
Children are the greatest gift to humanity and hold the future of our country in their little hands. It’s horrifying that one out of every seven children around the world today is a child labourer. In India, child labour and slavery are still pernicious problems to reckon with. A considerable number of children work in factories, sew our clothes, cobble our shoes, clean our toilets, dig mine and fight wars. And these are just a few occupations that expose children to hideous environments every day. Under extreme socio-economic pressure, parents force their children to work from an early age at the expense of their education and childhood. A shocking number of innocent children are trapped in poverty with absolutely no hope for escape and denied the basic right to a healthy, happy childhood.
As per the last survey conducted by the National Sample Survey organisation(NASSO) in 2009, 4.9 million young children in India are bonded in labour with a little difference from the previous years. For decades, we have employed these little ones as servants, slaves and care takers without a considerate thought to their present or future.
It is a despondent scene that child labour continues to exist in India because we do not care enough about who makes our cheap products or about poor parents struggling to afford school fees for their children. Global demand for low cost manufactured products could be one of the reasons strongly responsible for child labour existing today. Since young children are seen as cheap labour by factories, they are employed at meager wages and sometimes for free.
Children are the most vulnerable groups of our society; they deserve utmost care. We need to protect them from any form of exploitation and provide them a nurturing environment to grow and develop their potential. In order to provide a secure and healthy future for the children in our country, CAF India works rigorously on the ground to implement successful programmes through our CSR initiatives and Give-As-You-Earn (GAYE) interventions. Our programmes not only focus on providing nutritional food to children but also bringing down school dropout rates and creating awareness on the importance of educating them. Together with our NGO partners – Save the Children, Deepalaya, Udayan Care, Salaam Baalak Trust, Mobile Crèches – we are striving to ensure the physical, emotional, intellectual and social development of children. Slowly but surely, we will help free India from the curse of child labour.