Rajasthan Children's Home
Rajasthan is known as "The land of kings", and is the largest state in the Republic of India.
This house was high up in the mountains and the family who owned it allowed us to house the rescued children there until such time as we raised the funds and built the orphanage.
The Thar Desert or Great Indian Desert is a large, inhospitable arid region in the north western part of India and forms a natural boundary running along the border between India and Pakistan. With an area of more than 200,000 km2 (77,000 sq miles) it is the world's 18th largest subtropical desert.
Rajasthan is famous for its quarrying and mining and is the second largest producer of cement in India. It also has rich salt, Zinc and copper deposits. The Taj Mahal was built from the white marble which was mined from a town called Makrana.
Rescue of vulnerable children
Sharing Hands is also involved in the rescue of vulnerable children many aged between 5 and 12 years of age. All these children were the victims of forced child labour, child trafficking for sexual abuse and organ trading, and bonded slavery in factories and marble mines in Rajasthan, central north of India.
The only reason the children in the factories and mines were handed over is because they were dying and of no further value to their owners. These children had to be carried out to vehicles as they were to unwell to walk, and each child had to spend 1 month in hospital under medical care. They were then taken to a house in the mountains which was to be their home until we could purchase land and start the construction of the orphanage.
Rajasthan - An Irish Project.
Sharing Hands gave this to me as an Irish project. Fundraising started immediately and in 2009 we bought land and started the construction. In July I visited the children in their mountain home and viewed the construction as it got under way. When I revisited Rajasthan 2010, the children had already moved into their new home, which was supervised by two full time women staff who lived on the premises. The children were also attending school which was only a short walk away and all had school uniforms, books, pencils and bags.
Kind Hearts of Irish Sponsors.
This is all due to the kind hearts of the Irish sponsors who have taken on to support these children and to all extensive purposes have become their father and mothers. By 2010 there were that many children rescued, that there were now 3 times the number of children in the orphanage then it had been designed for. Sharing Hands had to also hire out a house in a nearby town to take the overflow of children.
In 2012 Sharing Hands rescued and provide medical aid, food, clothing and shelter for another 100 children. So you can judge the scale of the work involved with Rajasthan alone and have some idea of the support needed. Rajasthan now had 249 children and badly needed to build extensions so we can house more children. But after a political change of power all that changed....
For an update on Rajasthan please visit Building Projects