Howrah — Marking 30th year of work among street children in Kolkata, Don Bosco Ashalyam inaugurated Railway Childline Service at Howrah, the largest and busiest Railway Station in Eastern India.
The new Assistance Booth situated adjacent to the Railway Police Force Help Desk on Platform Number 9 will help lost children or children in difficult situations to be returned to their parents or rehabilitated. The Childline is run by Ashalayam under the aegis of Eastern Railway Authorities.
The Divisional Railway Manager of Howrah Dr R. Badri Narayan inaugurated the help desk, 1st July 2015 in front of a group of children from Mayer Asha, Don Bosco Ashalyam as well as several Salesians, volunteers and staff.
The Senior Divisional Security Commissioner (RPF) Mr Saurav Trivedi was present along with his men.
Salesian Vice Provincial Fr James Mathew and Rector of Principal of Don Bosco School Park Circus Fr Jose Pathickal gave brief messages.
The city program coordinator of Childline Ms Leena Dasgupta thanked the railway authorities, well wishers and children who turned up for the function.
The event was planned and executed by the new director of Ashalyam Fr Alfred Paul along with his team of collaborators.
CHILDLINE Project across India is supported by the Union Ministry of Women and Child Development (MWCD) under the Integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS).
In 1996, CHILDLINE India Foundation (CIF) launched CHILDLINE 1098, the country’s first toll-free tele-helpline for street children in distress. As of March 2014, total of 31 Million calls since inception have been serviced by CHILDLINE service. It operates in 291 cities/districts in 31 States and Union Territories through its network of over 540 partner organisations across India.
Each call centre has a team of trained youth who man the telephone lines 24 hours a day. Within 60 minutes (at most) of receiving a call the team rushes to the child and attends to the crisis at hand. It may involve going to a police station, the Juvenile Welfare Board or a hospital. There is a regular follow up till the child tides through the crisis, after which options for long term rehabilitation are presented to the child.