Open Shelter facilitates complementary institutional care to children in need of care and protection as defined under Section 2(d) of the Juvenile Justice Act, 2000
Mr. S. K. Mishra
The Open Shelter is not meant to provide permanent residential facilities for children. Rather, they will complement the institutional care facilities for children in need of care and protection already existing in the district.
Dr. M.M. Raja
- To attract above mentioned target group of children from their present vulnerable life situation to a safe environment;
- To wean these children away from the vulnerable situations by sustained interventions;
- To guide these children away from the vulnerable situations by sustained interventions;
- To provide opportunities for education and develop their potential and talent;
- To enhance life-skills and reduce their vulnerabilities to exploitation;
- To reintegrate these children into families, alternative care and community;
- To carryout regular follow up to ensure that children do not return to vulnerable situations.
Programmes and Activities
Providing 24-hours accessibility and temporary shelter to children:
DORD’s Open Shelter in Patna is functioning as 24 hours Crisis Management Centre to receive and provide necessary assistance and accessibility to children living in vulnerable conditions and in catchment areas like railway platforms, crowded market areas, tourist destinations, bus stands, mandi’s etc. Pro-rehabilitation environment and facilities are created so that we can attract vulnerable children in need of rehabilitation and shelter. Open Shelter in such a case serves as a point where children can enjoy timely and adequate meals as per the guidelines laid down. On an average 28 numbers of children visited the shelter during the day in the reporting month whilst during night on an average 15 numbers of children visited the shelter. In the reporting month 10 numbers of children visited the shelter regularly (at least six days in a week) during the day. We have also received two numbers of physically challenged children. It is important to know that in this month we found that 121 numbers of children were without parental care or without adult support.
Day Care & Night Care Open Shelter:
Categorically the Open Shelter can be classified as Day Care and Night Care based upon the kind of services enjoyed by the inmates.
Day care activities done in a month are as follows:
- Provision of meals, cookies, gift baskets and other freebies in the catchment areas;
- Distribution of free biscuits and chocolates at city buses or transit stations.
- Game’s Day – Organized different types of game in the contact point area.
- Art’s Day – Invited a local artists to teach art basics.
Those who needed night stay use to visit the shelter. Following are the provisions:
- 24 hours drop-in-cum night shelter facility.
- One Dormitory with adequate space for 25 children to sleep.
- Safe Drinking Water
- Hygienic and appropriate quality and quantity food as per menu
- 24 x 7 availability of power, back-up facility, water, etc.
- Availability of Sanitary facilities (2 nos).
- Washing Machine for cleaning of clothes.
- RO system for drinking water purpose
- Fridge for cooling and refrigeration purposes.
- Educational materials and space for those wanting to study. Safe Keeping of Item in individual Steel Boxes.
- Entertainment and recreational facilities through TV, group activities etc.
Referral to Children’s Home for long term care:
DORD Open Shelter in Patna facilitates liasoning with Children Homes to provide long term care. In the reporting month a total of 40 children has been transferred to children’s home or other open shelter and 18 numbers of children were restored to family.
Mapping of Vulnerable or at risk spots:
In the last year children were identified from Patna junction layout, Gandhi Maidan, Karbighaiya layout, Mithapur Bus-Stand, CWC Patna, Kankarbagh & slum near contact point areas. We do the outreach especially in areas like construction of buildings, ground, graveyard, on the streets and in drainage areas.We then select children if they are highly addicted, roam on the streets, do stealing and carrying antisocial elements in the society Other children refuse to come the Open Shelter due to resistance by parents as their parents do not have trust on the organization. Its challenge for the DORD to convince these children for enrolling them in the Open Shelter and rehabilitation.
We build good rapport with children through sports like indoor games, drawing, story – telling, singing and etc. By our involvement we try to gain the trust from children, later we do the case study of the child whether the child is drop out, highly addicted, roaming on the streets, do stealing and carrying antisocial elements in the society. Individual counselling is then conducted to know about the child and his family. We locate the address of the child and do door to door visit to their homes.
We conduct parents meeting in our working area for counselling them regarding their children and to share the objective of the program. Till now 78 parents attended the meeting and shared their views. We also involve the area leaders for better intervention in the slum areas.
Identification of Vulnerable Children:
Three of our Outreach Workers helped in the identification of vulnerable children within the geographical area.
Strategies adopted for identification of Vulnerable Children:
- Visits to Catchment Areas like Railway stations, bus stands, crowded market areas, religious spots.
- Meeting Community People.
- Regular Interaction with Schools to understand dropouts.
- Meeting Child Welfare Committee members who supports in referral of vulnerable or children in need of rehabilitation.
Innovative Child friendly Approaches and Methodologies:
In order to attract vulnerable children to DORD’s Open Shelter and sustain their interest we have adopted child friendly approaches and methodologies like Music, Drama, Story-telling, outings etc. All these approaches helped us in building contacts with them, build trust and to attract them to the open shelter and sustain their interest in the activities carried out at the shelter.
Counselling of Children:
The Project Coordinator-cum- Counsellor does the counselling of children who show symptoms not in line with the accepted social norms resulted out of psychological trauma or certain disorders or mannerism.
Providing Life Skills:
DORD open shelter provided timely various life skills to the children’s in order to enhance personality; raising self-esteem; develop a positive approach to life; better communication skills; enhanced capability of dealing with trauma, risk and vulnerabilities.
NFE Classes were conducted 5 days in the week with the following schedule. 15-20 children regularly attended NFE classes. We have two Care giver cum Bridge course educators. In the classroom, one can see small kids singing rhymes and learning Hindi and English alphabets in the fun way.
On the recreation front, the center is second to none as the Children have many means available for this purpose. This includes a TV set, Carom, luedo, foot- ball, badminton, crafting materials etc.
Facilitating School Mainstreaming:
After in-depth enquiry of the children we do assessment of each regular children coming to Open Shelter. This helps in formalising bridge courses for identified group of children. After providing specific modules we had contacted different schools to mainstream 7 numbers of inmates in this reporting period.
Encouraging voluntary service:
We are working on the modalities of convergence of Open Shelter Home vulnerable children to the newly launched programme Parwarish of Social Welfare Department, Government of Bihar. In the reporting month Naaz Foundation from New Delhi visited our shelter to understand its function and provide specific guidance to the children as well as staffs.
Encouraging Child participation:
Here in the DORD’s Open Shelter we promote and motivate children to work in groups and start taking their own decisions. For this we have made Children Committee to take decisions related to Menu, TV programmes and games. This particular activity is helping in inculcating the ability of decision making and group cohesion.
We generally refer the children suffering from drug and substance abuse, HIV/AIDS/STIs and other chronic health disorders for specialised services. In the reporting month 40 children being rehabilitated from Jaipur as indentured labourer were kept at our Open Shelter and then sent to NGO called Prayas for rehabilitation. Among others 18 such children were restored to their family by DORD Open Shelter Home team.