Mercy and Grace Orphanage - India
We have 75 children in our orphanage.


For all the world's children

whose lives are filled with hunger ...
and can’t understand why
And for all beings
who are dedicated to doing something about it.



At the Mercy and Grace Orphanage we have currently 200 children. We are planning and thinking to establish more orphanages in order to help as many children as we can in the rural villages, depending on your help and donations.

Our staff consists of Four teachers and Three Non Teaching Staff and Nine Volunteers to help the children who are in our loving care and protection.

Some background information:
The Rural Area where the project is to be implemented is famous for agricultural operations, and agriculture is the primary occupation of the people as irrigation facility is provided with canals of the river. However despite these irrigation facilities the economic standards of the people in these areas are very low, especially among the vulnerable sections of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes. The main reason for this disparity is high concentration of with a small group of 18%, belonging to the upper strata of the society. Even small and marginal farmers have to struggle a lot to bring their lands under cultivation as they do not possess any, assets or financial ability. Ultimately they have to struggle a lot to bring their lands under cultivation as they do not possess any, assets or financial ability. Ultimately they have to depend on money lenders, naturally these money lending and land owing class take advantage of this situation, render loans with exorbitant rate of interest and expect payments in kind by fixing low price to the farmer’s produce, usually the paddy.

In this situation another victim is woman, the exploitation on backward communities is a common feature in the society and the same is meted on women. Though she plays a major role in family maintenance, economy, child development etc., the due recognition is not given to her from any corner of the society. She starts her life in the small hours of the day to arrange comforts to others and works in the fields on par with men. Despite all these jobs she is neither regarded nor paid wages on par with men. The exploitative system is meted on women from the very beginning of her childhood. She is not sent to school and she has to take care of younger siblings and to assist her mother in household work.

With regard to the field of Education there is a lot to be seen critically especially in the context of the micro realities. Though there are primary schools in most of the villages around Hanuman Junction the drop rate is very high, about 45% of the children drop out themselves before they could complete their 5th standard, while another 35% before reaching the middle school. The residuary percentage of the children reach school final with great difficulty. Even this section of the children come from the middle class families or the families with economic support, but certainly not from the poor. The poor consider children as economic value and sending children to school would mean economic loss to them.

Problem Statement:
Children Education is the very serious problem which we are aiming at. As children are considered as economic value they are not sent to school and find placements in agriculture, cattle grassing and household work etc. As a result they are deprived of their basic right to Education and thereby lossing chances of having better life in future. This situation will pave the way to crop up many social problems as there are chances of these children becoming antisocial elements when they reach cities and towns in search of work. Therefore the plight of the poor children is in expressible, unless those children are educated and/or trained in vocational courses their families cannot be developed in any manner.
Further to the surprise of every body there are more cymophanes in this area. Education is a mythe and fulfilment of basic needs is a serious problem to these children. Though they are in the school going age it is rather unfortunate to know these children are 100% illiterate and no chance of going to school in life. A majority of such children are working with landlords, struggling very hard for their Master’s Development by not leaving any thing behind for them for their self reliance. In a way one can not blame the presents for their indifferent attitude as they are busy in struggling for their livelihood, hardly they have only hand to mouth living. Therefore the future of these children is left to their fate and to the mercy of the land lords. When a survey was conducted it is very strange to note that there are many child labour, street children, neglected, and abandoned-orphans and poorest of the poor in the below poverty line who cannot afford to have education and are engaged in other fields.
Inspiration: Mrs. Nirmala and Madhava both are the key persons to love, care and concern towards children which has driven them to initiate this mission. Unfortunately they are childless and this has further increased their live, care, concern and dedication to the welfare and development of the child labour, street children, neglected, abandoned semi orphans and poorest of the poor children. Their concern towards the well being of the children is known to many people around here. Many children and families have been experiencing their help.

Proposed Programme: Proposed programme aims at wholistic development of the children. Self reliance of the Children has been stressed, because Education is not the only programme proposed. “Vocational Courses” have also been incorporate in the programme. Because as far as Indian situation is concern it is not worth depending on Government for employment. Therefore Skill Development Programmes are proposed for Self-Employment and Self-reliance.
Education :
All the proposed children will be brought to the Home and compulsory Education will be provided upto class VII (Upper Primary) within the campus. After completion of Class VII Children those who are reinterested will be sent to High School and for the interested candidates vocational trainings will be given. Children attending school will be kept in the Home till they complete school final and thereafter will be sent out for College Education.
For Vocational Courses children after completing Class VII will be selected and trained. After successful completion will take the responsibility of finding placements for them. It has been planned to assist children to start production units on co-operative basis. Some of the trained chidlren may be engaged in the Home itself in its “training cum production centre”. For initial investment if necessary local assistance will be mobalised from Banks and otehr sources to start income and employment generation units. However by keeping “self reliance” in view the programmes and placements will be planned. In this process it will be ensured that a minimum of 35% will be reserved for girls. During their stay in the Home all their needs will be met food, clothing, shelter, education and all other necessities including medical aid and health care.

Vocational Trainings - Trades :
Tailoring and Embroidary, Typewriting, Motor Winding and Rural Electrification are presently identified as suitable and feasible in this area and children can have some assurance of having regular work. Tailoring and Typewriting are primarily ment for girls, however boys will also be trained. For typewriting students need to complete school final atleast to find a better placement.

For Motor Winding there is much scope as we find borewells in agricultural fields of every farmer. Therefore this Trade has got much demand. Presently Rural Electrification is picking up very fast, everybody is electrifying their houses and boys can find enough work. Therefore Motor Winding and Electrification will go hand in hand very well to boys. In further it has been planned to start carpentry, general engineering, computer education. We also wish to start diary and sheep rearing on an experimental basis within the campus.

Self Reliance - our Ideology :
Depending on donor agencies for years together is not the real development, rather it is making people more and more dependants. Therefore a serious through has been given to self reliance of the project and finally decided to procure assets to the organization in order to generate income. In addition to income from the Agricultural land the Training Cum Production Units will also contribute their share. Therefore it is easy and possible to maintain the Home and School without depending on any external help. Therefore initially Project needs to be supported for five years at least and therefore become self sustainable and project will be continued with it’s own resources.

CHILDREN AT RISK - A CHALLENGE FOR CHILD ACTIVITIES :
The State of Andhra Pradesh, ranks fifth in terms of population with 66,508,008 and that works out to 8.64% of Indian population of 84,63,03,688. Out of this all India percentage of population of children works out to 36% of the total population, divided in the following order of age groups : 0-4 yrs.-12.85% and 5-14 yrs.—23.15% of the total population. It can be safely worked out that 23.15% of the in A.P. too are in the age group of 5-14 with slight difference in the margin of about 3.15%. Without being contradicted even by Government sources, it works out to an average of 20% of the total populationof the state.

I. CHILDREN AT RISK

Child Labour:
Andhra Pradesh has the dubious distinction of having the highest number of children labor in the whole of India with 1.95 million (1981) and in 1991 it is estimated to be over 3.5 million.
The figure doesn’t include bonded child labor, child labor in villages and remote trible areas and children employed in unorganized sector located in unregistered work places like domestic child labor, migrating construction work force and children doing labor in homes an handing over the finished products to small industrial establishment for petty compensation, disproportionate to the labor involved.

Gender Composition In Child Labor:

Analyzing the gender composition of child workers in the state reveals interesting data. 58% of all child workers are boys and 42% are girls. 7.29% of the total female child population in Andhra Pradesh are workers, while comparable all India average is 2.95% only. In Andhra Pradesh, as is true of all India scenario, more girls are engaged as agricultural labour than boys.
Andhra Pradesh ranks 7th state in terms of people living below poverty line with 195.7 lakhs of people (33.7%) that is slightly less than one third of the total population. More than 70% of them belong to the unskilled agricultural labour class.

Bonded Children :
It is estimated that there are ten million bonded child labourers or slaves in India. In Andhra Pradesh, the bonded children must be over a million by most conservative estimate.

Child Sex Workers:
Child sex workers, mostly girl children (for instance, Child Devadasis and Jogins) represent the most abominable manifestation of exploitation of the child and therefore demand action at once.

Where does this problem begin?
The child is prostituted with the collusion of his or her family.

GIRL CHILD DISCRIMINATION:

* Three times as many girl children die as boys due to malnutrition or murder.
* The literacy rate in India is 39% for women adn 64% for men illustrating the unequal educational opportunities.
* Girls are still given less all occasions of food and health care than their male counterparts.
* Female infanticide.
* The killing of female foetus.


CHILD MARRIAGE :

* As per 1981 Census the percentage of married children in the age group of 0-14 in rural ares was 5.4% for boys and 15.59% for girls.

NUTRITION AND HEALTH CARE:
* 11,000 children die every day due to preventable diseases and it is estimated that 1.5 million children die every year because of diarreoha alone. The contributing factors to these unnecessary deaths include over populations, lack of health care resources in rural tribes, and a lack of education in nutrition and health.
PHYSICAL VIOLENCE AND SEXUAL ABUSE:

* Child battering and injuring the child physically by the parents, teachers and others in authority.
* Sexual abuse of the child: some estimates show that in 30% to 50% incidents, the offenders are family members, close relatives, neighbours and friends and 80% of children know their attackers.
* Traditional themes of the sanctity of the family, prerogatives of parents and children viewed as parental property have protected abusive families from inspection and intervention by society.
* That so many of the children brought to the detention center reported abuse as the primary reason for their presence on the streets suggests that child abuse should no longer be called a family matter that can continue to persist behind closed doors.



HAPPY CHILDREN :

Many children are being hampered today in their growing-up years by the neglect, confusion, pressures, and such like that are being exerted upon them. Children should be given the chance to be children and to be happy, and grow up straight.
Happy children are those who have loving, caring parents -both parents. A father and mother who care for their children, not spoiling but being devoted, contribute greatly to the happiness of their offspring.
Happy children are those who have encouragement. They are children who are praised for what they are capable of doing and who do it.
Happy children are those who are properly disciplined, but not abused. What a despicable thing it is to abuse a child. Proper correction is not abuse. Many children grow up knowing only they heavy hand of unnecessary hurt and the ugly voice of a temper tantrum from parents or other adults. How often a child’s life is tormanted by sexual abuse by a parent - or some other adult.
Happy children are those who are allowed to play children need play time for balanced development. A child is more than a brain or a body. He/She needs to grow up as a whole person. In play, children learn the give and take of life. Happy children are those who are taught about the loving God. Children, as a general rule, having no trouble believing in God. They should be taught of God’s reality, love and care for them..With regard to the field of Education there is a lot to be seen critically especially in the context of the micro realities. Though there are primary schools in most of the villages around Hanuman Junction the drop rate is very high, about 45% of the children drop out themselves before they could complete their 5th standard, while another 35% before reaching the middle school. The residuary percentage of the children reach school final with great difficulty. Even this section of the children come from the middle class families or the families with economic support, but certainly not from the poor. The poor consider children as economic value and sending children to school would mean economic loss to them.

CHILDREN LEARN WHAT THEY LIVE
If children live with criticism,
they learn to condemn.
If children live with hostility,
they learn to fight.
If children live with ridicule,
they learn to be shy.
If children live with shame,
they learn to be guilty.
If children live with tolerance,
they learn to be patient
If children live with encoruagement,
they have confidence.
If children live with praise,
they learn to appreciate.
If children live with fairness,
they learn justice.
If children live with security,
they learn to have faith.
If children live with approval,
they learn to like themselves.
If children live with acceptance and friendship,
they find love in others.


Please contact the following ADDRESS for further detailes:
Mrs.B.NIRMALA KUMARI,
MERCY and GRACE,
K.S.T. ROAD,
BAPULAPADU,
HANUMAN JUNCTION-521105, A.P ,INDIA.

E-Mail:
Ph:91-8656-244500 and 91-8656-244900
Cell:91-9848123500
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Written by Mrs. Nirmala, edited by Joseph Vos, 29 October 2000. Last modified 12 august 2009.