Programme for Children

Kamatipura (Mumbai Central) and Sindhigalli (Grant Road) catering to 60 children in the age group of 3 to 9 years.

A Residential Home to 165 children (5 to 18 years), to support educational, physical and emotional need of the children. The Village has a State Government recognized Secondary School Navjyoti, and a vocational training institute offering various trades to the youths from Navjeevan as well as nearby villages. The village is located at: Kapri Village, Tokawade P.O, Murbad Taluka.

located at Vashi and Kalyan for higher education and to provide follow -up support to the youths of Navjeevan till a stage of independence and reintegration. At present around 60 youths stay here.

The organization’s approach is to facilitate the comprehensive development of each child who comes to the facility. Each child comes with a different background and this understanding is crucial in establishing trust and assisting each child in his/her growth in an informed way. Some children are in a position to turn to their mother for support with time, some have no scope for support as the mother is unable to do so and some children are orphans with no one to turn to, in which case Navjeevan Centre becomes their guardian. Therefore, every child’s need is looked at individually through a systematic process of case work, psycho social assessment and counselling. At each stage, priority is given to the educational, health, emotional, interpersonal, moral and creative maturity of every child with active participation of the mother throughout the process. Each child is provided with opportunities at various stages of his/her development to equip the child to become capable, independent, and confident and whole heartedly participate in the various avenues of life.

The goal of this programme is to provide the much-needed facilities and nurturing environment in which these children can recover in body, mind, and spirit from the horrors of life in the brothels. The nature of the facility provided is based on the need expressed by the women themselves.

Children of mothers who are not willing to send their child to a total residential facility are taken care of in the day and night shelters which is in the vicinity of the brothels where the women work. The existing two centres cater to about 50 children each in the age group of 3-12 years. The expenses are partly met by a government grant.
Social workers through regular visits motivate them to send their children to the day/night care centres. The social workers keep the mothers abreast about the activities of the centre and also the growth of each child. Regular contacts with the mothers are an essential component, in the effective functioning of the centre. The activities of the centre are focused on providing basic nutrition and elementary value education. Primary training to prepare the child for formal school is undertaken at the centre. Cultural programs, field visits and the outing to enhance their growth and understanding of the outside world form part of the centre’s curriculum. Children are enrolled in the government-run school for continuing formal education. Regular visits and monitoring of the children?s progress in school is carried out by trained social workers. Periodic health check-ups and regular immunisation program is an integral part of the Centres work. Professional counsellors help children with emotional adjustment and behavioural problems.

The goal of this programme is to provide the much-needed facilities and nurturing environment in which these children can recover in body, mind, and spirit from the horrors of life in the brothels. The nature of the facility provided is based on the need expressed by the women themselves.

Children whose mothers are willing to send them to a residential facility is first enrolled in the orientation centre for a period of 6 months to 1 year, to prepare the children both physically and emotionally for the disciplined life in the institution which is very different from what they have been accustomed to. Under the care of house parents and counsellors, they are made to detach themselves from the learning that they have assimilated at the brothels and also to orient them to institutional life.

During this period a thorough health checks up and monitoring is conducted to rule out communicable diseases. This centre aims to give appropriate care for the infected children. Children with health problems would be treated at the centre or would be referred to hospitals and once cured; they would be shifted to the children’s institution. Functional literacy program, value education, exposure visits and training workshops form part of their curriculum.

From the orientation centre, the child moves to a residential home. The child would be taken care of in this home till he/she becomes 18 years. This is the place that the child would spend most of his childhood. The home has been functioning for the past 10 years, where children both boys and girls in the age group of 3- 18 live in “homes”(cottages) with no more than 20 children under the direct supervision of house parents or house sisters. The house parents and sisters live with them providing the love, care and understanding needed for the physical, mental and psychological growth of the children. These separate homes collectively constitute the Navjeevan Village.

a)School: There is a school, called Navjothi School in the Navjeevan Village. Children from the nearby villages are also enrolled in the school. Competent teachers are appointed to teach and monitor the child?s growth in the set-up of formal education. Since the majority of these children have started schooling at a late age, there would be an emphasis on remedial teaching. Collaboration with organisations like Pratham, promoting alternative teaching methodology will be continued. Students from B.Ed colleges will assist the teachers in developing remedial curriculum and teaching aids. Older children are also helped through aptitude test for ascertaining their strengths and thereby help them to choose relevant skills in future. Students are prepared to appear for the X board exam through the Maharashtra State Board. The library would be further stocked with more relevant books and audiovisuals, to motivate the children. Regular workshops and classes by experts are conducted for the teachers to broaden their understanding and teaching methods and to enable them to understand the psychology and the emotional needs of these children.

b)Vocational Training unit: The skill unit was initiated in September 2009 and the first batch of 300 students is undergoing/ completed 6 months to 1-year training in 10 different courses. Each trade has an average capacity of 15-20 students per batch and some trades have 2 to 3 batches. The various courses offered are Electrical, electronics, computer hardware, software, mechanical, civil, typewriting, fashion design, etc.This unit functions with the collaboration of Fr. Agnel Technical training Institute. It has helped the youths of Navjeevan centre, as well as the unemployed youth from nearby villages, get job oriented training.

c)Health centre: A primary health centre catering to the needs of the children, staff and the villagers have been functioning for the past one-year. Since there is no government hospitals or clinic is the nearby vicinity of the residential home, the health centre is of prime importance. A full-time residential nurse and visiting doctors take care of the health needs. The health centre is equipped with needed medicines and first aid kits to deal with the immediate health needs of the children. Frequent health camps to develop awareness on heath issues as well as to monitor the health status of the children and the villagers are conducted. Specialists from the different fields of medicine attend the clinic through the year.

The youths on successfully completing their school education at Navjyothi school move to the extension homes in Mumbai for higher education/ professional courses. There is one extension home in Kalyan for girls, one in Kandivili and two in Vashi for boys, catering to 38 youths who are studying class 11th/12th / professional courses or working.