In India, the problem of child labour is well recognized. Children are engaged in various types of work including those that are classified as ‘hazardous’. Although there are inter-state and inter-regional variations in India, the factors that generate child labour are basically similar and revolve around poverty, lack of access to quality education, demographic pressure, social exclusion etc.
In an attempt to transform the lives of child labor children in Koppal - the most poorest district of Karnataka, Bayer and its NGO partner initiated the 'Chiguru' project. Together the organizations work towards rehabilitation and reintegration measures for children in the age group of 7-12 years who are found working as child labor, primarily in agriculture operations or in other occupations.
The project which starts with a counseling session for the children who have not received any educational access or may have stopped their education at an early age and it ensures that they go through a supplementary educational system for around 10 months. During this bridge course schooling, children are provided with education based on their levels of learning and are weaned away from their trauma in order to successfully absorb them within the main stream educational system. Almost all children covered under this project have continued their education and the 'Chiguru' project continues to transform the lives of many more.