Children in tribal areas suffered the most

     

Bumbadia Sangeetaben Revabhai
UN0378322
UNICEF/UN0378322
09 December 2021

COVID-19 brought all sorts of problems to our lives. It affected our education and social life, and hurt families economically. A simple life. They go to work and bring back food and other essentials for their families. COVID-19 put a stop to that.

As soon as the income stopped coming in, family quarrels started. If a child interfered in his parents’ quarrel, he was beaten. Family members who had migrated to other places for work, came back home during the lockdown. This made life tough for and relationships became strained within families.

But it was not just the poor that were affected by COVID-19. Many middle-class families suffered too. Marriages were postponed and some married girls who were to be sent to their in-laws’ house could not go because of the difficult circumstances. In some cases, girls from the tribal community were married to non-tribal members out of desperation, because their parents could not feed everyone in the family.

Child labour increased a lot because there was no money in the house. Some children from the neighbourhood started going to the farm to work so that their parents did not have to hire outside labour. Children working elsewhere would give a portion of the earned money to their parents and keep the rest for themselves. This has made some of them addicted to money. These children have dropped out of school permanently.

The psychological impact of COVID-19 on children has been drastic. Some have trouble sleeping, or have had bedwetting issues. Some are too scared to be alone, or cry constantly. There are some children who have become aggressive and are always angry, or talk back to their parents. 

The world has become a strange place. People have stopped visiting each other’s houses, children are not allowed to go out and play. COVID-19 has made our lives miserable and we are waiting for all of this to come to an end.

 

By Bumbadia Sangeetaben Revabhai, 18, India.