Ensuring child protection and Community based Child Protection mechanism

SPAN started working towards ensuring the protection of children at district level particularly by facilitating and strengthening community based child protection mechanism as well as district child protection system in meeting standards specified under the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection for Children) Act, 2000 and Integrated Child Protection Scheme and also identifying the specific statement of need. Towards this initial meeting with the NGOs, CWC, JJB, DCPS members and police were conducted in four districts namely Jalpaiguri, Murshidabad, Birbhum and North 24 Parganas. SPAN also conducted the training of police officials on child protection in the districts of Birbhum and North 24 Parganas. SPAN developed to IEC materials in Bengali. One is for the Juvenile police officials describing in Bengali and in pictorial format the responsibilities of juvenile police officers in specific categories of the violation of child protection. Another material is a handbook in Bengali on child protection having all the related contact numbers of CWC and JJB members and Labour inspectors for child labour cases. SPAN presently also working on developing community based child protection mechanism by organising and facilitating mainly youth organisation in the villages and slums. Presently these youth organisations are visible in few villages of Jalpaiguri, Murshidabad and few slums of Kamarhati, Dum Dum and Barrackpur of North 24 Parganas.

Ensuring Protection and rights of the most vulnerable children from the tea garden areas of Jalpaiguri

Particularly in the tea garden areas of Jalpaigui the children are mostly vulnerable from the threat of Trafficking, child labour, starvation and others. That is because of the closure of some teagarden and extreme kind of labour exploitation where the government machineries most of the time fails to protect the children. Miserable living circumstances in the bizarre tea gardens of north Bengal have caused in hundreds of children being trafficked. In 17 tea gardens of Jalpaiguri district of West Bengal many children were forced to migrate and many of them never returned. SPAN in this areas could able to build a vibrant, committed and capacitated youth platform ‘Koshish’ who are now working as vanguard for this children. This youth, many of them are student and others are working in different sectors are focussing particularly of the issue of Right to Education, Disability and trafficking among the children. They are all volunteers and works in their own and neighborhood villages on these issues.