CHILDREN OF INDIA
India is a county approximately one-third the size of the United States, yet it is the second most populated country in the world, being the home to more than one billion souls. Two-thirds of it’s people live in poverty, with most of these living on less than $2 per day. This makes India one of the poorest countries in the world. Without sufficient drinking water, garbage disposal methods, and in many cases without electricity, diseases such as cholera, typhus and dysentery run rampant and lead to sickness and death. This is especially the case in the lives of children with chronic malnutrition being the leading cause of death. More than 47% of the young children are malnourished, causing a large array of special needs in these children.
Many of the orphans of India belong to the social and cultural or religious minorities that live through the 550,000 villages in the rural parts of India. Poverty has left these children with little or no help and many are subjected to slavery just to survive. Although child labor for children under the age of 14 in India is prohibited by law, still more than 60 million children between the ages of 5 and 14 are working in the fields, factories, quarries, and more than 70% of these children work as domestic servants where they are physically assaulted by their employer as well as forced into prostitution.
Thousands of children lose their lives daily, not only because of poverty, sickness, and poor living conditions, but because of female infanticides, a cultural practice in which thousands of small baby girls either die before being born or lose their lives just because of their gender. Sadly, every minute that passes, there are an estimated 9 abortions of female fetuses that take place in India.
A baby girl is often looked at as a ‘burden’ because women, who lack education, still often don’t contribute to the income of the household. Apart from that, the practice of dowry, which is still prevalent in the Indian society, means the more girl children that a household has, the more money the family needs for dowry, a tradition requiring the parents of the bride to give large amounts of money and valuable goods to the groom and his family. Many think the Dowry system in India often makes daughters an ‘unaffordable economic burden’ and a drain on family resources.
HOW CAN I HELP?
There are many ways you can help, including praying specifically for the Children of India, Mercy International, and our Team. If you feel led, you can donate to our India Ministry, or you can be a part of a future Mission Trip.
Our long-term vision is to organize and lead mission trips to work at our Arise Child Care Center, Children's Home, or with our Village Outreach Program. We will need volunteers to minister to our precious children, help with building projects, organize supplies, and help with maintenance on the properties. But most importantly, we need volunteers who want to serve the children the families in the villages, and build relationships with the staff.
If you are interested in a future mission trip or would like to be added to our mailing list, please Contact Us to express your interest in becoming a part of our team that wants to make a difference.