67 children reunited with their families in Lucknow

In an emotion filled event, 67 children who had lost contact with their families were reunited with their parents at a ceremony organized by SATHI on 5th July 2017 at Lucknow. These children had either run away from home, trafficked or lost and were rescued from railway stations of Kanpur and Varanasi. There were also some children who had attended a month long home orientation camp in Govt. Children’s Home, Ramnagar near Varanasi.

The children were handed over to their parents in the presence of Smt. Rita Bahuguna Joshi, Cabinet Minister for Women and Child Welfare, Govt. of Uttar Pradesh. Speaking at the event, she said “It is not possible for me to explain in words the happiness of getting a child back who was lost. For any mother, it is the second biggest happiness after the birth of her child”. Appreciating the work of SATHI, she said that when a person starts good work, it is possible to gain the support from society and the government within a short time.

The Minister promised that the government would open more shelters for lost and separated children. She also said that the government will start working soon for begging children and are seeking to collaborate with organizations in this endeavor.

12 months, 18 railway stations, 10 thousand children

Between April 2016 and March 2017, SATHI and its partner NGOs helped more than 10 thousand children from 18 railway stations across India. This the highest number of children helped in a year in the organizations 25 year history. We are thankful to the support received from the government, our NGO partners and the funding partners for this achievement. The credit also goes to the outreach staff who have done the hard work of patrolling the platforms every day on the look out for children needing care and protection.

This summary report contains a break-up of children helped in various locations and the action taken on the platform.

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“Railway children” bags honors nationally and internationally

“Railway Children” is an award winning Kannada film that explores the world through the eyes of 10-year old Raju, who has left home and landed on a railway station. The film explores various themes such as abuse, sexual abuse, addiction and even gender issues. This film makes an honest attempt to explore the intimate realities of platform survival. In this world of platform-survival there are gangs, there’s drugs, there’s sexual violence, there’s entrepreneurial spirit, there’s life, there’s hope, there are helping hands and there are cruel bosses.

Though it is a fictional film, it draws inspiration from the real incidences experienced by the NGO Sathi and from the book “Rescuing Railway Children” by Lalitha Iyer and Malcolm Harper.

Honours and awards

The film premiered at the Mumbai International Film Festival in October 2016; it was the only film from Kannada competing in the India Gold Section.

Manohara K won the Award for the Best Child Actor at the 64th National Film Awards in 2017 and the 2016 Karnataka State Awards. The film was adjudged as the Second Best Film at 2016 Karnataka State Awards.

”Railway Children” was showcased at the 57th Zlin Film Festival – International Film Festival for Children and Youth held in Czech Republic in May 2017. The film received a commendation from the Ecumenical Jury Zlin 2017.