Margasusi Home ( Rights of Children of FSWs through Prevention, Protection, Provision and participation)
Located in Hosur, Tamil Nadu, Margasusi Home is one of the oldest and long running project of Vidyanikethan. Over the years, it has evolved based on the project specifications, but its core service relates to children of female sex workers (FSW) and very vulnerable families. At present, Margasusi Home provides children of FSW an opportunity to transform their lives in a comprehensive and sustainable manner.
Services at Margasusi Home
Children of FSWs, girls in particular, and those living in very difficult circumstances are identified and provided residential facilities at Margasusi Home. Once the girl is admitted here, the staff makes efforts to enroll them in the Government school. The girl also gets nutritionally balanced food, living facilities, health care, post school coaching and counseling support. Prior to coming to Margasusi Home, the children of FSWs had undergone different forms of abuse, including sexually abuse, in their homes. Many a girl’s marriage had been fixed, while still she was under age. In this scenario, Margasusi Home provides the children with the much needed safety from an environment of exploitation and deprivation. It ensures adequate nutrition, access to education, post school coaching, health care and an atmosphere where the children rebuild their lives in a positive manner. It is also supporting their FSW mothers to improve their lives in different ways.
- Sense of emotional and physical wellbeing among the children leading to better disposition, ability to focus on their studies
- Children are active and less prone to renal and malnutrition related diseases.
- The weight and development indices are appropriate in most children.
- Better immunity and resistance to seasonal diseases, faster recovery in case of any disease.
- Interest in sports and extra-curricular activities has improved.
- Adequate food and proper nutrition has made it possible for the hostel authorities to cope with the demanding conditions of menstruation among the young girls.
Each batch that passes out of Margasusi Home, after completing their 10th, is opening a new chapter not only for themselves but also for the future generations, as never will the girls undergo the type of suffering that their FSWs mother did. Margasusi children home, in Hosur, Tamil Nadu is being supported in infrastructure from Luk India, Food and Education from Jana Foundation and part support as part of consortium under SRHR (Sexual Rights Health Rights) project.
Highlights of activities during 2016-2017
- 12 girls were rescued during this year. These girls had suffered from different forms of abuse during the year. Most of them are admitted into the hostel.
- Support from Luk India: The culmination of almost a year of hard work from Luk India culminated in a grand function on19 th February 2016 when the top brass of not just Luk India but also the parent Sheafler group officials rededicated the renovated hostel to the children. An investment of about Rs. 15 lakhs has gone in to the renovation. Almost the entire infrastructure and the basic amenities were upgraded. Right from the flooring to the wall painting, bathrooms and toilets, storage areas, kitchen equipment, cooking and wash areas, electric wiring, fixtures and furniture, bunker beds for the children with proper bed linen, etc most have being replaced. The children have been introduced to a new way of living for the very first time. A large TV is mounted on the wall showing cartoons as the children have their meals in the dining room. During 2016-2017, Luk India constructed the first floor of the hostel. This will help to have a separate counseling room for the children, in addition to other facilities.
- Support from Janalakshmi Financial Services (Jana Foundation): Jana Foundation’s support has not only improved the life of children on a day to day basis but opened the door to a whole new way of life. Areas of support by Jana Foundation include:
- Measles-Rubella vaccine drive: This project period saw significant activities related to the health, infrastructure and protection of the children. The children were given the measles- Rubella injections as part of the drive by the Central Government.
- SHG (self help group) meetings for parents of children are going on regularly. The parents are being motivated to save money for the future of the children.
- Conducting sessions on POSH (prevention of Sexual harassment) for First Step Baby Wear.
Other companies and individuals who have supported Margasusi Home include:
- Air Wicks that supported in the digging of the borewell at the hostel.
- XIME (Xavier Institute Of Management) donated Rs. 1 lakh towards the hostel.