In today's India, growing urbanisation, migration from rural areas and the disintegration of the traditional community structure have changed the social economic scenario and given rise to a new, vulnerable group of children in the metropolitan cities called "street children". The term street children refers to those children for whom the street has become their real home. Not all of these children are necessarily homeless or without families, but they live in a situation where there is no protection or direction from responsible adults. They are the children who rely completely on the street for survival.
Hope believes that protecting the street children from violence, exploitation and abuse is an integral component of protecting their rights to survival, growth and development. Child Protection means protecting children from physical, emotional or sexual abuse. It also entails helping children to grow up into confident, healthy and happy adults.
Child Watch Project Child Watch project serves children who are at high risk as a result of being exposed to and affected by criminal and violent acts, such as assault, physical abuse, sexual abuse, and domestic violence. It aims to ensure a secured future, improved quality of life and basic rights for the needs, vulnerable children who are at risk, through the provision of holistic care, 24 hrs support and other necessary activities. This project aims to eliminate child labour, protect children from different kinds of abuse, rehabilitate addicted children and ensure all children's rights of basic education and health through advocacy, networking with government or non-government organisations and awareness generation in the larger community.
This project offers counselling, detoxification, rehabilitation and follow-up of the children, who are substance abusers or hard-core drug addicts, mainstreaming of children who are involved in child labour, treatment, nutritional supplementation for severely malnourished children, networking and lobbying with government and other stakeholders on issues concerning child labour. In addition to this, Hope runs four drop in centres for street children with Kolkata police and provides them with non-formal education, nutrition, medical and psychological support. Under the Child Watch programme Hope Child Protection Unit patrols Kolkata's streets at night in fully equipped ambulances looking for abandoned, high-risk children on the streets. Hope rescues those children from those situations and provides them with the necessary support through its two crisis intervention centres. After the necessary treatment they rehabilitate and restore those children.
Protection Homes for At Risk Children Hope has eight shelter homes for the protection of underprivileged at-risk children. It includes four protection homes for at-risk girls, one home for boys, one home for victims of trafficking, one home for HIV/AIDS infected and affected children and one rehabilitation home for child addicts. These homes are for holistic care for the development of the children by providing shelter, food, medical care, counselling, educational support and legal aid.
HOPE Laundry Services is a new initiative of The Hope Foundation to give the boys of its Punorjiban Home (rehabilitation centre for solvent addicted street children) a new lease of life. Located at 16, Radha Gobinda Sarani, near M R Bangur Hospital, the facility is equipped with two fully automatic washing machines, one automatic dryer, a sewing machine for mending and a superior quality electric iron. The four-member staff who run the services are young men who have completely recovered from addiction under Hope’s de-addiction programme. They have been thoroughly trained and for the past one year have been efficiently running the shop as a fully sustainable project. Various HOPE projects such as HOPE hospital, HOPE Café and HOPE protection homes have engaged the boys to do their laundry and pay for the services. The local residents also regularly give clothes for washing and ironing.