Despite a surge in economic growth since the late 1990s, an estimated 700 to 800 million people live in poverty in India. Many families continually struggle to support and educate their children, and nearly half of all children in India are malnourished. Sustaining the cycle of poverty in India are limited education and employment opportunities, inadequate social and physical infrastructures, and the legacy of a caste system that determines, at birth, one’s rank in society.
Social stigmas against unwed mothers and increasing rates of HIV/AIDS place additional strain on families in India. With few social services and poor access to medical care, many parents feel compelled to abandon or relinquish children they lack the resources to support.
In 1979, Holt began serving children and families in India through partnerships with local leaders and child care organizations. Holt also helped establish two full partner agencies – Bharatiya Samaj Seva Kendra (BSSK) in Pune and Vathsalya Charitable Trust (VCT) in Bangalore – providing services and residential care for homeless children. At VCT and BSSK, Holt adapted the model of attentive, affectionate care Harry Holt developed in Korea, reducing infant mortality to almost zero. Holt went a step further in 1982, introducing model foster care for India’s institutionalized children.
Today, the child welfare organizations Holt helped to establish in India continue to grow and diversify their services, and remain a significant part of Holt’s history and legacy. Holt also continues to serve struggling children and families in the region through local partnerships that promote family preservation, foster and child care, educational sponsorship, and domestic and international adoption. With Holt support, our partners work to keep families in crisis together, providing the basic nutritional, educational and medical support parents need to adequately care for their children. With over half the children in Holt care relinquished by single mothers, Holt’s partners place special emphasis on helping struggling single mothers become self-sufficient – and able to support their children.
In India, many children drop out of school to help earn the family’s income. Through educational sponsorship, children in Holt’s family preservation program are able to continue attending school while their families work toward self-reliance. Families of sponsored children benefit from access to a family health clinic, nutrition program, women’s support groups and income-generating projects, including micro loans for small businesses.
Support Children and Families in India!
Sponsor a child!
For $30/month, you can help provide everything from nutritious food, warm clothing and safe shelter to educational support and loving, attentive care for a child in India.
Give a Gift of Hope!
Whether for Christmas or another occasion, giving from Holt’s gift catalog is a wonderful way to honor a loved one. Help one girl in Holt’s India programs achieve her goals – support one year of her education. Or help provide basic healthcare, life-saving food or a needed medical procedure for a vulnerable child.
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