Where We Are
The only country where our work currently takes place is India, concentrating on the city of Varanasi.
India is the second most populated country in the world. It hosts more than 1 billion inhabitants, among which it is estimated that about 330 million live under the poverty threshold. In spite of being the tenth most industrialized country in the world, India concentrates the largest number of the poor in the planet. There exist large social inequalities, stressed by the severe deficiencies in the basic service provision.
In India, education and healthcare are not free of cost and thus are unattainable for millions of families. The children of those families, lacking an education and with the limited strength obtained from their deficient nutrition, are forced to work in arduous conditions from a tender age, sadly condemned to a hand-to-mouth existence.
|Demographics of India|
|Infant mortality||72,5 /1.000|
|Life expectancy||63,2 years old|
|Human Dev Index rank||124|
|No of doctors||0,41/1.000|
|School enrolment rate (12-17 yrs)||43,8%|
|Child malnutrition rate||46%|
Varanasi is one of the most important pilgrimage centers in India, where hindu believers come to spread the cremation ashes in the waters of the holy Ganges in the expectation that the cycle of reincarnations will be closed. Varanasi is the center of Uttar Pradesh, one of the most backwards and overcrowded states in India.
Alike many other cities in India, it hosts thousands of emigrants, who come in the expectation of overcoming rural poverty and end up living in slums in unhealthy conditions. The districts of Bazaar Biha and Nagwa, among others, concentrate large numbers of untouchable families, who suffer economic and social exclusion. Even though the Indian constitution of 1950 prohibits discrimination against casts, the large majority of the poor and illiterate in India belong to the lowest casts, who to this day continue to suffer discriminations of all kinds.
These marginal communities of untouchable, who according to hinduism are impure by birth, soften live in poor conditions and have for an occupation jobs which are traditionally considered degrading (involving physical contact with waste, excrements etc).