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International Child Helpline Day, 2015

CHILDLINE 1098 Service » 1098 Events » CHILDLINE Open House, 2015

Child participation involves encouraging and enabling children to make their views known on issues that affect them. Given the genesis of the CHILDLINE service, its identity continues to be linked to a deep-rooted vibrant relationship with children. Involvement, respect, best interest of the child, access to information, expression and empowerment are some of the key aspects that come to mind when we think about what the concept of Child Participation means to CHILDLINE. Similarly, being a facilitator, listening to children, acceptance and accountability are some of the requirements that emerge while envisioning our role in the process of enabling children to meaningfully participate. CHILDLINE’s belief that when children are heard and involved, systematic changes would impact their lives positively has grown even stronger over the decade of its service.

Open House is an open forum for children to raise issues faced by them to the CHILDLINE team. This platform also allows children to be heard and seek support of government systems. The allied systems present in a particular are are invited to the Open House to participate. Held once a month, Open House is a tool for child participation that helps indetify problems faced by children and for us to receive feedback on the effectiveness of the CHILDLINE service. CHILDLINE then follows up with the decisions taken to reach a logical conclusion.

Some outcomes from the Open House conducted during the last year

  • A circular was issued by the Assistant Commissioner of the Tribal Development Department in Jashpur to all the government and non government schools to allow CHILDLINE to conduct open house programmes
  • 8 children were admitted to a government school in Kodagu and 25 children in a Bengaluru slum were enrolled in a school
  • More than 25 school droupouts were found in a slum area in Mysuru. Most of the children had quit school due to economic conditions. A letter was written to the District Collector by the CHILDLINE team to provide school facilities to these children. Post this intervention a school was set up with 3 teachers in that area. At present 56 children are enrolled in this school.
  • An Open House conducted in Jammu allowed the team to create awareness among the students of Government Middle School on child rights and child protection through a street play.
  • Children from villages of Amadader, Patha, Payli, Jugthar and basgadi complained during the Open House session that the mid day meals provided to them was of a low quality and that the meals were not regular. The mid-day meal supplier in all these areas was reprimanded and now all the children reeive the meal as per the menu and on a regular basis.
  • During the Open House programme in Vijayapur the children raised issues such as child marriage, sewage problem and lack of basic amenities in their school. As a result of the Open House session 6 child marriage cases were reported and intervened by CHILDLINE as well as safe drinking water facility was provided by the Panchayat. Along with this a plan was decided upon in order to construct the school compound and toilets for the students.