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Shraddha Balangan, Nasik– Crusading for child rights
UN Declaration on the rights of the child
Special protection, opportunities and facilities to develop physically, mentally, morally, spiritually and socially in a healthy and normal manner and in conditions of freedom and dignity
  The right to a name and nationality
  The right to social security, adequate nutrition, housing, recreation and medical services
  The differently-abled child to be given special treatment, education and care
The need for love and understanding so that the child grows in the care and responsibility of his/her parents, and in an atmosphere of affection and moral and material security
  Entitlement to education, which should be free and compulsory, atleast in the elementary stages
  The child should be among the first to receive protection and relief in all circumstances
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Children are the potential future of our country. But it has been seen off late that they are deprived off their basic rights and are subjected to abuse, exploitation, neglect and maltreatment.

Shradha Balangan is a drop in Child Friendly Center started on 30th November 2005 at Nasik with a aim of providing a safe and secure environment for street children by creating and maintaining interest among children for education. It is a home away from their parents where children are prepared for formal education system. They are also introduced to the morals of life.

Nasik is known for its mythological, historical, social and cultural background. It is an important place of pilgrimage and Ganghaghat {banks of River Godhavari} is the place where most religious rites are performed .Nasik is located at an equal distance from both Pune and Bombay being at a distance of 210 km and 200 km away respectively. The Population of the city is around thirty lacks. Recent industrial growth has brought about modernization and development in the city. The city has also witnessed the rapid growth and development of various industrial and non industrial sectors. The city is well connected to other nearby cities through national highways.

The employment opportunities in Nasik lured many people from near-by cities to migrate. But the fact is that all these migrant add to the poverty level and to fulfill their daily needs pertaining to shelter, health, hygiene, education, recreation etc. These people lack awareness on family planning, education, development of children etc. In Nasik hundreds of families are still trapped by caste, gender discrimination, vicious cycle of poverty, child labor, illiteracy, trafficking, prostitution, street living children etc. These children suffer some of the worst conditions experienced anywhere in the world. For instance, children are more likely to be malnourished, have inadequate sanitation, do not attend school, and marry underage.
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Children are a part of the disadvantaged minority group because they are generally physically, mentally and economically defenseless. The children often tend to restore to unfair means to earn money for their basic needs. Children are found begging on the banks of Gangaghat, collecting firewood, tending to animals, street vending, dyeing, prostitution and domestic labor. Children who migrate form near by cities, and orphaned children are found taking shelter on the streets and railway station. They are invariably malnourished,. Child prostitution and sexual abuse , addiction are major problems amongst the street children. Their physical as well as mental growth gets stunted because of the surrounding environment. They are prone to rough environment and learn abusive language. They are nor exposed to values and culture. These children have improper development and tend to loose their valuable childhood which in turn jeopardize their future.

Hence the need arose to establish a child friendly Center that would protect and promote child rights This center provides non formal education to the street children and mainstreaming them in the government schools in a secure environment. Children at these centers learn skills such as craft-making and tailoring which can prove more valuable to them . The insecure environment that they live in only aggravates their problems.
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