The Bal Adhikar Initiative
Uttar Pradesh accounts for an estimated 20% of the country’s working children. In 2000, UNICEF in cooperation with IKEA set up the Bal Adhikar Initiative in the carpet belt of the state where children account for more than a fifth of the workforce.
The project was set up in 200 villages of the carpet-intensive Jaunpur, Bhadohi and Mirzapur districts. It now covers 500 villages and addresses:
• The denial of children’s rights to education
Currently, around 346,000 children up to the age of 14 years are reached through this Initiative. Around 24,000 children have been enrolled in primary school. Around 850 self-help groups have been formed, helping more than 11,000 resource-poor women in the 500 villages covered by the Initiative.
Using this successful model, the long-term goal is an increase in the number and scale of community-centred approaches for the prevention of child labour by the government.