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Child Protection

Children being an extremely vulnerable population, their protection assumes great significance for their healthy development. However, not seen as a major issue earlier it has surfaced as a matter of major concern for policy makers and even public at large. The United Nations Convention on Child Rights, by declaring Right to Protection as an issue of child rights has provided some attention and obligation on the signatory states though much remains to be realized. Going by literal meaning, Child Protection would bring under its ambit numerous categories of children whose security is at stake, reeling in situations of neglect, maltreatment, injury, trafficking, sexual and physical abuse of all kinds, pornography, corporal punishment, torture, exploitation, violence, and degrading treatment waiting for immediate attention and protection.

These children often addressed by different names has been recognized by the Indian government as children are in "Especially difficult circumstances" with their estimated figures at nearly 30 million as per the Ministryof Social Justice and Empowerment. The much needed infrastructure and administrative mechanisms for dealing with the apathy of such children in India has been far from being adequate in spite of the recognition of the problem. Prayas has been striving for providing institutional facilities as well as promoting non-institutional mechanisms for the effective rehabilitation of neglected children. The organization considers the juvenile justice, child trafficking, child labour and child abuse as issues of child rights and child protection and addresses them through Six Shelter Home for children, Childline, 24 hours emergency out-reach service and Crisis Intervention Centre. The Child Protection Unit (CPU) of Prayas plays a pivotal role in drawing the experiences from the numerous institutional and non- institutional programmes and raising issues of concern at the policy level. The organization has raised the issue of child protection vehemently in collaboration with more than 280 Child Protection NGOs in the light of the Integrated Child Protection Scheme of the government taking their recommendations to the doors of the Planning Commission as a member of the Steering Committee and the Working group on Children.