Phase 1 Funded by: TFWA Care, The Jephcott Trust and The Evan Cornish Foundation
Cost: £32,000. opened 2014
Phase 2 Funded by: Women in Travel Retail and other generous supporters
Cost: £25,000. Under Construction
To be instrumental in getting the children away from the railway lines is something the Trust and its sponsors are very proud of as we are changing lives far beyond anything perhaps we can understand. From a very early age the children have been working with their Mothers as Rag Pickers or as low paid domestic workers and many are trapped into prostitution. Their Fathers are alcoholics, on drugs and chain snatchers working the trains. Many boys, some as young as 14, are addicted to glue sniffing.
The Trust visited the slum between No. 2 and 3 Gate Slum at Guwahati Railway Station in 2010 and was appalled by what was found. No education, no medical support, no running water, no electricity, no sanitation and very poor housing which is made of plastic sheeting and boards. This is compounded by the constant aggressive attention of the local police. The children told us their families had lived there for 50 years and no one had ever broken free of slum life. We agreed to build them a home.
A local NGO ‘sSTEP’ built the first phase of this very important project with primary funds donated to the Trust by Tax Free World Association. Now 25 young children between the age of four and sixteen years have a home and attend the local government school nearby and so are being educated for the first time. A teacher from another school comes to the home each evening to give the children additional tuition. There are now two full time young ‘Mothers’ living in the home looking after the children.
The second phase of construction to add another floor to the building is currently underway. This will provide 2 more rooms for accommodation so that up to 50 children can attend, plus a kitchen, staff quarters, new stairway and toilets.