Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh
We have been working in Hyderabad since 2003, due to a childcare crisis in the area. We have since continued to support the children and families of this troubled region.
Hyderabad City is the political and economic capital of the Andhra Pradesh region. Due to a recent growth of the population there's increasing strain on existing services, infrastructure and housing.
Families living in urban slums
Hyderabad is one of India's largest cities, with a population of nearly seven million people. The city has expanded recently, and this has meant an increased number of people living in poverty and slum conditions. Startlingly, it's estimated that around a third of the population lives in informal housing, with poor access to basic services and infrastructure. These kind of conditions lead to high incidence of communicable diseases.
A childhood full of risks
Children who grow up in slums are often at high risk of loosing the care of their parents. These parent may be struggling to earn a living, and struggle to meet the material and emotional needs of their children. Some children are not sent to school because their parents can't afford it. Many of these may work to raise the family income. This may include work as domestic workers, in shops or in construction. Some, particularly boys, can be found working with hazardous substances.
Girls are especially disadvantaged in this community. They are sometimes considered a burden, due to the cost of a girl's marriage dowry, and are therefore at risk of being abandoned by their parents.
SOS Children intervenes to give vulnerable children a loving home
In April 1999, we found out that more than 200 infants from the province of Andhra Pradesh had been bought from their parents by criminals, who had planned to sell them on for adoption. The children had ended up in a home run by the local authorities, but were living in terrible conditions. SOS Children stepped in, and tried to reunite the children with their families, and give them the much needed medical treatment and loving care they needed. Those children who could not return to live with their parents were given a new home in newly-formed SOS families in Hyderabad.
The rapid growth of Hyderabad means that our work in the region is just as important today, when many families and children living in poverty need support.
What we do in Hyderabad today
When a child can no longer live with their own family, they can find a loving home with one of the SOS families in Hyderabad, where they are cared for by SOS mothers. An SOS nursery provides day care for children from the SOS families and from the local area. SOS Children's Village Hyderabad is situated in the bustling village of Vottinagulapally, about 25km outside Hyderabad City.
SOS Children supports children and families in villages within a 20-kilometre radius of our Village. Working with local organisations, our family support programmes provide various services for families. Many of the children who benefit from our programmes live in households headed by poor widows. We provide food for those in need, as well as educational support and access to health care. In order for parents to earn a living, we offer them vocational training, career counselling and advice on how to look for a job.
Our work in Hyderabad touched the lives of many families and children in need. Will you support SOS Children, and help to give a child a better life?