New Delhi, India
With more than 18 million kids living on the streets, India has the highest concentration of street children in the world. Without adequate shelter and care, children often suffer from malnourishment and do not have access to formal education and medical treatment. Without support from family, they are left to fend for themselves, entering the labour market at an early age. Many are vulnerable to being trafficked, forced into child prostitution, drug trafficking, or resort to begging to earn an income for their exploiters.
Planeterra partnered with Salaam Baalak Trust, an organization that provides safe housing, counselling, education, and support to over 5,000 children in New Delhi, as well as managing five safe homes across the city. Salaam Baalak Trust runs a “City Walk” program, a youth-led walking tour that provides a different perspective to Delhi while giving youth the opportunity to gain new skills. Funds from the City Walk program are used to provide scholarships and job placements for youth, as well as resources for the shelters. By connecting the program to G Adventures travellers, they now have a reliable stream of income to support their education and social service work.