What is Every Last Child?
Every Last Child is Save the Children India’s movement and commitment to bring a massive change in the situation of children who are marginalized due to where they are born or who they are. There is tremendous poverty and lack of awareness amongst a major section of India, especially rural India and the urban poor population. This affects the fate of children born into these families. From a very early age, children are exposed to beggary, poor nutrition, disease & unhygienic environment, illiteracy, child labour and child marriage. All this, while they should be well fed, well protected and leading a happy childhood, which is of utmost importance for them to turn into a well-functioning adult.
The statistics are alarming. Every last child, in a short span of over a year has been successful in facilitating significant improvement in these child rights violations. In 2017, 8.77 lakh children were directly reached and provided either health & nutrition support or education support or protection from poverty, abuse and child marriage.
Not only this, there has been a great achievement in bringing substantial change to the life of children on the streets (estimated to be more than 20 lakh in number as per Save the Childrens Life on the street report). Launched with the National Commission for Protection of Children rights (NCPCR), the campaign has affected the adoption of Save the Children’s Standard operating Procedure for tackling children in a street situation, by not one but 3 major states of India – Maharashtra, Delhi and Uttar Pradesh.
The campaign has reached over 5 million people on social media and is working with partners such as Global Citizen, Youth Ki Awaaz and its celebrity ambassador Dia Mirza, to change public opinon and gather support.
Various state offices of Save the Children have mobilized efforts with state Governments and are undertaking major campaigning as well as programmatic (direct on-the-ground work) to meet the goals of the Every Last child movement.
The movement aims to get 5 lakh street children identity which will enable them access their basic rights to survive, learn and thrive as this will have them get access to vital health, education and protection services.
It Launched in April 2016, this global campaign aims to reach out to the most excluded and forgotten children in the world across the globe through aggressive advocacy, fundraising and programme work.
The globally defined objectives for the campaign states that: a fair chance for all children should be there, all children should be treated equally and there should be accountability to children.
The campaign has defined goals and objectives in India. These are:
1.Removal of Socio economic inequality among children: Our aim is to provide all children access to essential services irrespective of their socio or economic background.
Education: Lack of education infrastructure, school attendance percentage, poor teacher to student ratio, poor teacher training, lack of teachers in rural parts of India. Lack of awareness and education amongst parents and communities, especially the rural, poor and urban poor
Hygiene: Poor hygiene, lack of proper toilets, healthcare awareness & facilities in rural parts of India
Social causes: Impact of religious beliefs, social structures & norms that discriminate one caste from the other and thereby one human being from another
Child-care: High infant mortality, malnutrition, high incidence of diarrhoeal deaths
2. Rescue of vulnerable and deprived children on Indian streets: Street children in India are the most deprived and ignored lot, we will work to give them an identity they deserve.
Migration: Inflow of people and children from rural India and poor infrastructure in Urban India to support this inflow
Awareness: Low birth registration rates, illiteracy amongst parents of children living on streets, numbness of urban India towards street children
Education: Poor enrolment of street children into schools and poor implementation of child support subsidies and policies of Government
Social causes: Social structures and caste discrimination resulting in social evils such as children working as domestic help, other forms of child labour, child illiteracy, and child abuse
3. Remove Girl child discrimination: We will work towards removing gender based discrimination towards girls who are disappearing.
Awareness: Social beliefs that discriminate girl child from male child in rural and urban India, more prevalent in rural India and urban poor, lower literacy percentage of girl child, lower school attendance, child marriage and high number of under 18 mothers in India
Health-care: Inadequate healthcare and protection for female child