The Church of North India was formed in 1972 by the union of six Protestant denominations committed to actions of restoring the integrity of God’s creation through breaking down barriers of caste, class, gender, economic inequality, and the exploitation of nature. Currently, the Diocese of Durgapur, a district of the Church of North India is involved in a number of ministries that care for all ages and members of the community. These ministries include a thriving medical hospital and eye clinic, a nurse training program, an anti-human trafficking program, homes for children at-risk of being trafficked, gardening projects, emergency relief programs, and income-generating projects.
Anti-Human Trafficking Program
The Diocese of Durgapur began their Anti-Human Trafficking (AHT) ministries in 2006 with the creation of a program for vulnerable children. Women from Diocese were compelled to open a program to offer a safe space and new opportunities for self-expression to children who are at-risk of being trafficked. Today, this program continues to grow and the Diocese runs six child development centers and four residential homes. Each center provides an impressive range of opportunities including formal education, kitchen gardening, string instrument lessons, nutritional meals, medical check-ups, sports, sewing lessons, and more.
There are more than 350 children who attend programs at one of the children centers of the Anti-Human Trafficking Program, and many others who are in the target areas awaiting admission into one of their residential homes. The Diocese of Durgapur raises funds for their Anti-Human Trafficking programs through local and international relationships. Additionally, the Diocese sells handicrafts such as handmade cards, to raise funds for school fees, school uniforms, books, and meals. The Diocese is raising funds to continue their services and to open additional centers in different areas of Durgapur.
Update: June 2019
The Church of North India’s Diocese of Durgapur has been active for many years to provide programs to prevent and raise awareness of human trafficking. In June, the Diocese of Durgapur organized a Human Trafficking Awareness event in Jatakuri, Malda. Families from the Jatakuri village participated in the program. The program included sessions from the Church of North India, medical professionals, and local school leadership. In total over 30 individuals came to the event.
The program highlighted the prevalence and root causes of human trafficking including unemployment and economic inequality. The presenters shared about occurrences of sex trafficking and labor trafficking and common ways individuals become victims of human trafficking. Additionally, the attendees collaborated on ways to work together as a community toward the common goal of preventing human trafficking.
During this discussion, the Diocese of Durgapur shared about additional opportunities they are offering to raise awareness on human trafficking in the Malda area and the different government assistance programs to help families stay together. The event concluded early due to a sudden thunderstorm, but all who attended received information on how to contact the Diocese of Durgapur if they had questions or concerns about human trafficking in their community.
Newsletters from the Diocese of Durgapur
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