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TARA Child Protection & Empowerment2024-05-17T09:52:36-06:00

TARA Child Protection & Empowerment • India

It is estimated that nearly one third of all children living in extreme poverty reside in India. This large proportion of disadvantaged children directly correlates to high rates of child trafficking, child labor and other forms of exploitation.

TARA India was launched and registered in 2008, combining the knowledge and efforts of two experienced child protection professionals, a social worker and an educator. They wanted to offer an alternative to the systematic institutionalization of children that was becoming widespread in India. The goal is to offer a safe haven for the most disadvantaged, at-risk children – a space where their safety, education and human rights are the absolute priority. Over time, TARA’s individualized residential care programs have evolved to include preventative efforts to strengthen and keep families together, preventing the institutionalization of children in any form. They have adopted a two-pronged approach to child protection: response services for the most extreme cases, and preventative services to address root causes and break harmful cycles. In all aspects of their work, TARA cooperates closely with the relevant institutions in Delhi to ensure the respect of children’s fundamental rights.

PROGRAM FOCUS

TARA Outreach Center: The center, based in a marginalized community of mostly migrant families in South Delhi, aims to strengthen vulnerable families to prevent their children from ending up in institutional care. Established in 2019, the center provides classes to supplement government schooling as well as skilled social work support for families experiencing challenges such as substance misuse or domestic violence.

TARA Homes for Children provides residential services for disadvantaged children, many of whom are survivors of violence, abuse or neglect. TARA provides holistic support for these children, including:

  • Individualized care by a team of qualified, devoted professionals, in a safe and family-like environment;
  • A nutritious diet and complete healthcare;
  • Quality education in Hindi and English;
  • Extracurricular activities, including: music, dance, languages, self-defense, creative writing and even architecture.

TARA Child Protection: Child protection is prioritized in all aspects of TARA’s work. All staff members attend regular training sessions according to legislation on Child Protection in India and meet regularly to discuss updates. TARA fuels the empowerment of children by involving them in the process of their own protection and education. The children at TARA regularly participate in workshops on child protection and human rights.

WORKING IN PARTNERSHIP

Partnership with TARA began in GoPhil’s earliest days, when the founders were scouting for pilot partners. Since then, the GoPhil community has contributed to the growth and evolution of TARA programs in key ways, including:

  • Playing an advisory role on the Steering Committee for the development of the TARA Outreach Center, and contributing towards the start-up costs;
  • Support for improved operational activities in the residential programs, including salaries for professional child care workers and educators;
  • Renovation and improvement of housing and educational facilities;
  • Funding sponsorships of individual children, ensuring their access to education, health care and extracurricular opportunities.
  • Providing support on measuring the impact of their programs.

WHAT MAKES TARA UNIQUE?

TARA is constantly learning, evolving and adapting according to industry research and government policies. Child protection is at the core of their work, and this focus shines through when hearing the TARA children talk about their rights and responsibilities as citizens.

TARA provides a tight-knit community setting where children can begin to heal and collectively overcome the trauma they’ve experienced in the past. At the same time, each child is treated as an individual, with unique needs and strengths. The unique attention, resources and opportunities provided by TARA allow children to recognize and maximize their true potential.

If you are interested in supporting TARA, please email us at [email protected]

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