The Emigra Worldwide India office located in Bangalore, each year supports a charity initiative primarily focusing on children. The team selects the charity through a committee. The various options are brought forth by its members and in turn they vote and make a selection for the current year. This year the team was keen on being involved with supporting a cause involving female children and as a result they picked the Baale Mane shelter as this year’s initiative.
The Baale Mane is a shelter for disadvantaged and abandoned female children. They provide these children with a secure home, with the long term objective of enabling them to lead self-sustaining adult lives. They focus on teaching life skills, awareness about child and female’s rights with a strong emphasis on both formal education and creative expression. Baale Mane was founded in 2001 by a NGO, dedicated to the eradication of the child labour system by supporting female children living on the streets. The idea for this shelter emerged from a survey of children living in the streets, which emphasised the seriousness and degree of exploitation faced by female children.
This shelter currently houses around 50 young girls between the ages of 7 to 18. They are referred to the shelter through the government Child Welfare Committee, friends, neighbours, distant relatives or other organisations working in a similar capacity. Once they reach 18, they begin the transition to an independent life outside, living in the city. Currently they support 20 such females – some study for degrees, others do vocational training or enter the world of work depending on their interests and aspirations.
After the Emigra team had selected Baale Mane, they reached out to them to understand their most pressing needs We were advised that hot-water for the children for their daily needs was one of the main requirements and based on this we then worked with an agency to get a ”solar powered” water heater installed for them. This was primarily funded by contributions received by Emigra employees
In addition to raising money, as a practice, the Emigra team also visits the establishment supported to spend some time with the children. This took place on May 14th. During this visit Emigra organised a lunch and team interactive sessions with fun activities such as bracelet making.