Mahima Homes update
During the reporting period, we provided shelter and care to 19 girls at Mahima Umeed, 30 girls at Mahima Umang, 15 girls at Mahima Udaan and 18 boys at Mahima Premanand. Ashaloy cares for 100 children in Sonagachi, and 50 women from the red-light area attend the fellowship service conducted there weekly.
We organized 28 sensitization programs reaching over 2,000 people through our annual dance theatre production titled "Breaking the Barriers of Exploitation." The primary focus of the performance was family involvement in trafficking and other atrocities inflicted on female children. Our sensitization programs have collaborated with the government's Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS) in the South 24 District in West Bengal.
All our girls are keeping well, dreaming of independent, safe lives. They have access to medical, educational, psychological and recreational support. They also received spiritual input through their participation in the Sunday worship service. We had 11 new girls join our family last year. Most of our girls study in formal schools, both the English and Bengali Medium, and get tutoring support. One girl cleared her Madhyamik Examination (Grade 10 public exam), another girl appeared for her Madhyamik Examination (Grade 10 public exam), and another cleared her Higher Secondary Examination (Grade 12 public exam) in 2019. The other girls not enrolled in formal school are being homeschooled and given vocational training. Eight girls are engaged in different vocational training centres such a Touch Nature, Navya Jeevan Disha, Hope Café and Khushi Designs, where they receive a stipend. We could admit one girl in the Netaji Subhas Hospitality Management Knowledge Campus for a diploma in Hospitality and Travel Tourism.
Girls participated in their school sports and performed well. Two of them have received prizes; one of the girls participated in the district level sports competition and secured a position. The boys at the Premanand Boys' Home all attend formal school and are doing well. They have excelled in soccer and have received many medals and trophies from football tournaments. They also participated in their respective school sports and received prizes.
In 2019- 2020, one of the girls received 150,000 rupees and another girl 200,000 rupees as interim compensation for the trauma they had faced, resulting in their perpetrators' conviction. In 2019 we integrated 20 girls. Many of the children living in our homes have their parents in correctional homes, and these children were able to visit their parents during the last year.
One girl who has been HIV positive since birth is receiving proper medication and care, and she's doing well. We also provided medical support for two of our ex-clients who were diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder and epilepsy. This support allows them to continue to live healthy lives.
Some of our ministry friends organized retreats at a leading hotel in October 2019 and February 2020, respectively. All the girls of Mahima Homes and some staff attended. It was a meaningful time for the children to learn from God's Word and has left a long-lasting impression of hope, love and encouragement in their minds.
• Pray for the upcoming license renewal of all three homes
• Pray for a young girl in our care suffering from HIV - that she responds well to medicine and restored to good health
• Pray for Grade 12 students that have not completed their exams due to lockdown and grade 10 waiting for their results.