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Bachpan-Bachao-Andolan-End-Child-Trafficking

Bachpan Bachao Andolan, one of the largest organizations in India that fights child labor and trafficking, filed a complaint on June 24, claiming that there is child labor occurring in south Delhi.

The district task force and a team of police carried out a raid and rescue operation in various south Delhi restaurants, clothing stores and jewelry stores. 24 children were rescued; 16 were between the ages of 10-14, and the rest were no older than 18.

According to the BBA website, in the last month the organization has rescued 124 trafficked children “working as bonded labors across occupations and processes like Zari units, jeans and garment outlets, shoes and slipper units, eating joints and bindi-making units.” These children worked long hours, often between 12 to 14 hours, without any wages.

“Child laborers continue to work across the capital despite various laws and directions of the court,” said BBA chairperson R.S. Chaurasia. “Thousands of children are still working in the small eating joints and hotels. More painful is the fact that adults working in thousands of shops and factories are not getting the prescribed minimum wage, making them send the children to such places.”

Children are often trafficked from vulnerable countries when they face desperation, a lack of basic resources and the promise of a better future. A 15-year-old boy from Nepal was convinced by a distant relative (who ended up being a trafficker) to leave his hometown and come to Delhi for employment and money that could help the family back home in Nepal. “After the earthquake in Nepal, conditions in my hometown were very difficult,” said the boy. “Me and my family were left with no work, no money and food.”

This boy (whose name has been withheld for anonymity) worked at a small hotel in Delhi under very inhumane conditions. His hands were severely wounded after long hours of cutting vegetables and cleaning pots and pans in the kitchen, but his “employers” failed to provide him with medical services. His cuts were crudely and cheaply stitched together at a local place.

According to the BBA website, “Hundreds of millions of children throughout the world are engaged in work that deprives them of adequate education, health, leisure and basic freedoms, violating their rights. Of these children, more than half are exposed to the worst forms of child labor, such as work in hazardous environments, slavery or other forms of forced labor, illicit activities such as drug trafficking and prostitution, as well as involvement in armed conflict.” Child trafficking in India is a dire issue, especially today.

Bachpan Bachao Andolan is India’s largest grassroots movement to end the trafficking of children in India and to provide children with their basic human rights. Since October 2014, BBA has rescued over 83,500 trafficked children, enslaved children and children oppressed under child labor. BBA also helps these children assimilate into society after they are freed, helping them regain trust.

BBA was established by Kailash Satyarthi in 1980, when child labor was not recognized as a problem by the Indian government, media and public discourse. Since the organization’s beginnings, it has focused its efforts largely on the rescue operations of children in various dangerous environments such as brick kilns, stone quarries and carpet factories. It also runs rehabilitation centers for these rescued children.

BBA has demanded policy changes in government legislation to address child labor and anti-trafficking laws. The Supreme Court of India first addressed child labor and trafficking when an appeal was submitted in April 2011 by BBA. Since then, the Indian government has ratified the Palermo Protocol, and laws have been incorporated into the Criminal Law Amendment Ordinance.

– Margaret Anderson

Sources: BBA 1, BBA 2, IB Times
Photo: The National

tibet_salute
Typically, when we think of skills training, we often have a career path in mind or we are seeking to enhance our job performance. But what if you wanted to perfect your ability to speak on behalf those in need?  For instance, maybe you are looking for more effective ways of getting your legislator’s attention, or perhaps you are a grassroots organizer wanting to train your team on how to successfully frame a political argument.

Have you thought of advocacy training?

Hosting organized workshops and retreats centered on effective political action techniques are a growing trend among organizations. One example of such training are the Free Tibet! Action Camps held by a Students for a Free Tibet (SFT).

These training sessions are held “to give participants an overview of the basic principles of grassroots organizing, non-violent direct action and strategic planning.” These week-long action camps are a highly interactive training program for members seeking to learn ways they can impact and represent the Tibetan Freedom movement.

While the content of advocacy training can differ greatly depending on the issue being advocated, it seems to all be contained within the idea that uniformed mobilization and direct activism is crucial for effective advocacy. Amnesty International’s Legislative Advocacy Training markets itself to “train you to become human rights advocates by learning how to speak about important human rights issues …. with your elected Members of Congress….”

While Advocacy International’s training content utilizes human rights specific wording, advocacy training content can vary greatly such as providing insight for gender, parenting and education issues.

Traditional in-person workshops are not the only delivery method advocacy training is taking.

For instance, United Way’s Center for NonProfit Excellence program offers online tools to measure an organizations advocacy capacity. Its “Advocacy Capacity Tool” has a simple goal: it “helps groups measure their readiness to engage in advocacy.”

The participating organization answers a series of questions that access their knowledge and resources to successfully impact legislation and run campaigns. They then provide a tool kit to for effective advocacy that claims to offer “step-by-step tools to assess, build capacity and evaluate advocacy…”

Since advocacy training is a new aspect to the field of grassroots organizing and advocacy, its scope and impact has yet to be evaluated. However, with leading grassroots organizations making such training a priority for its employees and members, we may see advocacy training expand and mold in the years to come.

– Angela Russo

Sources: Students for a Free Tibet, Amnesty International, Center for Nonprofit Excellence
Photo: China Tibet Online

cause_dc_restaurant
In Washington D.C.’s popular nightclub district, Cause DC is redefining what it means to give back. Opened in late 2012, the bar and restaurant operates with an unusual business model; at the end of each meal, the patrons get to choose one of four rotating nonprofits they want to benefit from their purchases. The establishment, co-founded by Nick Vilelle and Raj Ratwani, then donates a portion of its profits to a changing list of charities.  This new restaurant model based on charitable giving – which has been copied in several more establishments around the country – has been dubbed the ‘PhilanthroPub’.

The goal of the restaurant is simple: to make donating “more convenient, fun, and transparent for everybody.” The bar was created in response to a decrease in overall giving and volunteering because of the current financial climate. Indeed, Ratwani was first struck with the idea for Cause DC when he was struggling to balance his own philanthropic interests with his educational and career schedules. Vilelle, who has worked with nonprofits as an organizational psychologist for more than a decade, saw the restaurant as an opportunity to improve the efficiency in both giving and development at the grassroots level.

The bar’s founders do not want their venture to be viewed as a novelty, however, and have worked hard to create an establishment that is worthy of praise by its own merit. They hired an experienced business manager and a skilled chef to ensure that their food and atmosphere would make the bar as deserving of a visit as its philanthropic goals. The ingredients featured in their menu are locally sourced and ethically produced, and the dishes are a far cry from typical ‘pub grub.’ The adventurous patron can start their meal off with African Chicken Groundnut Stew as an appetizer, follow up with a Wheel Ranch Lamb Ragou, and round the night off with a Buttermilk Panna Cotta for dessert.

The true beauty – and genius – of Cause DC lies in its simplicity. Their target audience is the quintessential twenty-something, out to have a fun night in the city. As Vilelle says, “Younger people aren’t your big-check philanthropists.” In order to integrate this audience into the world of charitable giving, Cause DC came up with a different way to tap the market. The restaurant allows young people to actively support worthy nonprofits in a manageable way, simply by doing what they would have done anyway. The rotating list of nonprofits further adds to the bar’s appeal. Organizations interested in working with the restaurant can fill out an online application, which is then reviewed by an advisory board. Each quarter, four new recipients are chosen, with the board favoring those that are “innovative and working at root causes,” Vilelle explains.

Once Cause DC has recouped their start-up costs, they expect to be making annual donations of up to $100,000. To maintain transparency for their customers, they are planning on publishing reports of their donations online. For those patrons who want to know exactly where their money is going, or want to know more about the nonprofits to which they are donating, all they have to do is write their email address on the receipt. They will then get an update on what their money has helped to accomplish.

– Rebecca Beyer
Feature Writer

Sources: Stanford Social Innovation Review, Cause DC

the-akaa-project
The Akaa Project was started by then college student Lauren Grimanis in 2008. She took the idea of affecting change in rural Africa and created a campus-wide movement. The movement then spread to a full-fledged and funded non-profit organization.

The Project works within the Akaa region of eastern Ghana, working directly with poverty-stricken families in Ghana to alleviate poverty and promote self-reliance. The Project team works to improve the health, education and financial well-being of the village families. Their on-the-ground efforts create concrete change in the community’s day-to-day life.

Major projects have included building a school, enabling access to healthcare, and enhancing the community’s access to finance through micro-loans and small business initiatives. The Akaa Project involves the community in all decisions, projects, and initiatives, and works to ensure the community is involved and empowered through the organization.

Akaa’s founder Lauren Grimanis graduated from The College of Wooster in 2012. She majored in Global Development and Management. She was able to travel to South Asia to learn from social entrepreneurs and NGOs to best understand the most practical practices for rural development.

During her time at Wooster, Lauren and a group of dedicated students developed a strategy to engage the small liberal arts community at the college. They sold handmade village jewelry in the bookstore, organized dodge ball tournaments and dances, and made customized sunglasses to help fundraise. Several College of Wooster students were also able to travel to Ghana to volunteer in the community. They were able to not only spread the word about their organization throughout the college, but also spread knowledge of global poverty and development needs in Ghana and the developing world as a whole.

Lauren’s efforts translated into a school with six classrooms, six teachers, and an educational advisor. Seventy-five children are able to attend on a daily basis. The organization has plans for future expansion. Lauren was also able to install two borehole water wells, placing women at the center of the decision making process. Additionally, the Akaa Project sponsors child and infant nutrition awareness clinics, sexual health education, and condom distribution, among other services. The Akaa Project has also been able to provide eleven micro-loans to women in Akaa, helping to empower women in the community.

For an organization of their size, the Akaa Project is taking substantial leaps forward in providing real development to a marginalized and vulnerable community. They are looking to expand their future operations to bordering communities to help as many people as they can.

– Caitlin Zusy 
Source: The Akaa Project

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where to post fliers
We love to post fliers! They’re cheap, quick and when a flier is posted at the right spot, it’s viewed by thousands of people per day.

 

Where to Post Fliers

  • Let no cork board go un-Borgen Projected. Coffee shops, community bulletin boards, utilize anywhere you see an opportunity for fliers or posters.
  • Friendly business. We’ve seen many business put Borgen Project posters in their windows after being asked by volunteers.
  • Telephone poles along busy roads. Many busy streets have upwards of 30,000 cars driving by each day. Posting fliers along these roads is a way to instantly get the cause in front of thousands of people.

 

Download Posters/Fliers