Slum dwellers- Hope
By Saroj Swain
29 Aug 2012
A slum, as defined by the United Nations is a run-down area of a city characterized by substandard housing and squalor and lacking in tenure security. According to the United Nations, the percentage of urban dwellers living in slums decreased from a massive 47 percent to 37 percent in the developing world between 1990 and 2005.However, due to rising population, and the rise especially in urban populations, the number of slum dwellers is rising. One billion people worldwide live in slums and the figure is projected to grow to 2 billion by 2030.
In India, the Slum dwellers are the most substantial but overlooked section of the society. At a sizable 26 percent of India's population; they represent the poorest of the urban poor. Different states have different meanings of the word slum. But a few characteristics are hard to escape. Minuscule living areas, a burgeoning population living below the poverty line, nil drinking water, and latrines shared among hundreds, a non-existent sewage system; the record is endless.
A film like Slumdog Millionaire brought to the world's notice the condition of slums in India. The rich and affluent were so worried that India is being shown in bad light because we don't treat our slum children like it was portrayed in the movie. But the truth is what Danny Boyle showed the world.
Children that come from the slums many of them are orphaned and live with relatives or one of the parents might have died or the father deserted the family and the woman struggling to make ends meet with her children. Jobs for women are hard to find - and a woman from a slum may get a job as a maid. She herself will most likely have no education that she can pass on her to her children - there is a lack of everything in the house she might have - the house will be one room-in a crowded neighborhood where mosquitoes can carry malaria from one dwelling to another.
The children have no future - unless they have an education and most likely there is no money to pay the way, the uniforms, shoes, food, and other things needed for school.
In this condition, a slum school is being run by a tea vender Mr D. Prakash Rao at Cuttack, Odisha, India and being financed by the people, who desire to donate. By seeing the condition of the children Swami Adyananda Saraswati of Siva Shakti Siddha Yoga Ashram (http://shivashaktisiddha.org/) is adopted to organize health camp regularly for the children and weaker society of the slum dwellers. There was an opportunity to serve them a full meal and to take care of their health and provide adequate medicines, where me and my father, Sashi Bhusan Swain , President of the Ashram along with other office bearers involved. We are committed to do such service regularly in every year at a certain interval. Swami jee is interested to extend the school to provide the children more space for their study.
I was fascinated by a girl child,Sweety, (the name given by me) who was extremely beautiful. I could not resist myself to take few portraits of her along with her family and friends at the slum. I wish to adopt the child for her education in near future.There is always a great hope for slum dwellers....Government will come forward and help them for their upliftment...