Project Street provides on-the-spot assistance for women who live on the street.
We helped Kavita get off the street and create a better life. We met her on the streets of Mysore where she lived with her husband and one son.
Her husband was abusive, and she ran away from him sevral times, only to return to him. She drank a lot, spent a lot of time in in the local police lock-up, and did not take care of herself or her little boy. She became pregnant again, and through that process learned of her HIV status.
During this time, we were able to get her the right kind of help at a compassionate, knowledgable HIV clinic that counseled her and helped her through the pregnancy that resulted in a healthy, HIV-negative little boy. We also helped her escape her abusive relationship.
Kavita now takes good care of herself and takes her medicine regularly. She earns a living cleaning houses, and often visits her two little boys who now live at our shelter.
*Name changed to protect privacy.
Life on the Street
We work on a busy street in the city of Mysore in South India, where most of the women and kids have lived here for years.
Some of the women are used for prostitution, with husbands and teenage boys as pimps. A few collect discarded vegetables from the market to sell on the roadside. Many destitute elderly men and women also live here, as their families have discarded them.
Some who work on the street live in shacks in nearby villages. They come to work on the street for four or five days. Their little ones come along and hang out on the street instead of going to school. Bus fare is too expensive for them to go home every night, or they spend their earnings drinking while their kids sleep on the street. On a good day, the average income for a street person is around US$1.00.
Today, our program helps in the following ways:
- Medical and dental attention for all healthcare issues
- Housing stipends--we help these women find housing so that they no longer have to sleep on the sidewalk.
- Interaction with other members of society through our volunteer programs
- Our shelter--many of the street kids now live at Karunya Mane
With Your Help, We Can Do More
We find new destitute men, women, and kids often, as our moms refer them to us for medical assistance or for help in admitting their kids into decent schools. We help many street women with HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis, and help them find proper counseling and medical attention. Consistency has allowed us to slowly gain their trust. Some of the moms now work earnestly with us to help their fellow women in need.