in April 1998, the Salesian Provincial Council took the sagacious decision of first starting a project for street children in Hyderabad; it being the capital city of Andhra Pradesh, and only later Vishakapatnam. They appointed Fr. Maddichetty Noel to spearhead this mission. He was sent to BIRDY (Bosco Institute of Research and Development for Youth) to begin the work while also animating some of their programs. Thus began Don Bosco Navajeevan Bala Bhavan, a “project for children and youth at risk
It was a very uphill task to find suitable premises to establish Don Bosco Navajeevan, Secunderabad. After months of searching, a three storied building was rented and by June 15th, 1999 the boys moved in to their new home and work began in a more systematic manner. We still thought to have our own infrastructure instead of being in a rented building. Again after months of search we found a three floor building near to the Secunderabad railway station and made the final agreement to purchase the same in the month of March 2000. Now the reconstruction of the building is finished and the building was inaugurated on 24th April 2001 by Sri. Devender Goud, Honourable Home Minister, Government of Andhra Pradesh. This would be our contact center and the round the clock shelter for street and working children.
- A vast majority of these children take to the street because of the emotional deprivations and insecurity that they suffer at home at the hands of their very parents and close relatives.
- What a street educator starts during his contacts with the child on the street, the healing of these emotional deprivations, building up of rapport and creating of a family atmosphere s taken forward by the COUNSELLING department located at the above three shelters. Presently, two lady counselors at Bhoiguda Shelter, one counselor at Nampally and one counselor at Kachiguda runs it. They listen to the problems of the children with their motherly touch and affection.
- Many a times, the counselors contact their parents and prepare them to accept the children back. During this period around 9,280 children have been successfully united with their families. We have counselors at all the centers to counsel the parents. For the parents of child laborer's, we ask them to produce an affidavit stating that they will send the child to the school. There are instances when the counselor or street educator accompanied the children to their homes.