Urban homelessness is one the fastest growing issues in the developing world. The Census of India defines the homeless as ‘those living without a roof’ using housing quality as the main criteria for this assertion. Homeless is India fall below those living in slums and mostly constitute of transitional, migrant and unemployed people of society. Poverty and vulnerability often strengthen homeless situation.
While estimates suggest that more than 1,00,000 people in Delhi are homeless, the existing shelters in Delhi accommodated only around 10,000 homeless. Homeless constitute one of the most socio-economically vulnerable sections of urban society and societal stigma further aggravates this condition. Given the lack of permanent or temporary shelters for the homeless, urban space becomes the necessary setting for their lives.
Humana People to people India, in collaboration with Samajik Suvidha Sangam (Mission Convergence), Government of Delhi aims for social improvement of homeless citizens of Delhi through their Homeless Resource Centre Project (HRC) in East and North East Delhi. The project lays emphasis on homeless site mapping, designing and providing sustainable, timely interventions for their social and economic upliftment.
HPPI’s Homeless Resource Centre works in the following areas of homeless development intervention:
- Night Rescue: To carry out the night rescue operations from 10 pm to 4 am during winter and scout for people spending nights on the roads, unguarded against the dropping temperatures. These people are taken to the shelters and facilitated with immediate medical care if necessary
- Education: Educate homeless children through non formal educational classes and special training centres under Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan and conduct adult literacy classes for men and women at shelters
- Health: Organize awareness campaigns on reproductive health, child health, hygiene, nutrition and other diseases; provide health care-diagnoses, treatment and referrals through mobile health clinics and services, conduct immunization drives, HIV and AIDS awareness program.
- Skill development and Livelihood: Work side by side with the aim to ensure sustainable growth by empowering homeless people through skill training and vocational training programs which enables a steady source of income for their families
- Convergence with Government schemes: Facilitate merging with government schemes and policies for marginalized homeless people, procuring ID cards, voter cards.
The project has reached over 25,000 people with direct relief assistance and benefitted 1900 people through 4 night shelters in Delhi. It has aided treatment of 18,110 people through health camps and reached out to 643 children and 251 adults through various literacy programs. 4259 people have also benefitted from assistance in procuring universal ID cards and voter ID cards.