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PROGRAM FOCUS Child labour, human trafficking
ESTIMATED BENEFICIARIES 3,000 trafficked children directly

In 2018, the Freedom Fund is launching a new hotspot to progressively eliminate child labour in Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan, through a united strategy involving apparel and handicraft businesses, the state government, enforcement systems and communities.

Jaipur is a world-leading centre for production of traditional handicrafts, jewellery and unique textiles. But some of these products are manufactured by children working in hazardous and illegal conditions. In the workshops, children are often forced to work excessive hours in confined spaces, and are out of contact with families. They suffer damage to vision, burns, and chronic cough. Rescued children at a Jaipur shelter made a video, seen here.

Our program is intended to change the incentives for business, enabling the city to move decisively against child labour, while promoting the future growth of its businesses, and multiplying child-friendly tourism. It can be a win-win for the children and for the future of Jaipur.

The program is also distinctive in promoting cooperation between Rajasthan and the state of Bihar to remove children from exploitation in workshops, pursue justice against traffickers, and give comprehensive reintegration support to the children in their home state. Approximately 80% of trafficked children rescued in Jaipur are found to come from Bihar.

The goal is that a successful approach, benefiting business, tourism and above all tens of thousands of children, will serve as an important model across India and globally.

The program will:

  1. Work with key business institutions, associations and training providers in Jaipur so that pro-active businesses take a stand against child labour. This will include providing access to a child labour free certification – and providing better value product orders – to participating suppliers. It will also expand the stream of verified child labour free apparel and other handicrafts by forming women’s producer-owned companies in neighbourhoods affected by high levels of child exploitation. Once these systems are in place we will promote sales of child friendly products, especially through tourist outlets, Jaipur bazaars and international retailers.
  2. Strengthen actions to protect children in key neighbourhoods – working with local NGOs to build up momentum for child labour free zones in the city. We’ll also collaborate with police and child welfare committees to increase rescues, improve care and restoration of the children, and strengthen prosecutions.
  3. Help Rajasthan and Bihar collaborate for better reintegration – including working with the Freedom Fund’s existing NGO partners in the main Bihar districts where the children are coming from, to help families to prevent re-trafficking.
  4. Promote the model – As the city progresses against child labour, we’ll disseminate the model to encourage adoption by agencies in other areas.
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