From one Tetanus infection to 10,000 volunteers, the story of Juvenile Care
Juvenile Care is a social project that was started in 2010 by Rahul Prasad, a young man who made social welfare his passion. It works by involving young Indians in social ventures and activities, and has over 10,000 volunteers working for child rights and child abuse eradication.
Based in Bangalore, Juvenile Care is a registered trust with chapters in Vellore, Pune, New Delhi and Jaipur. It helps college students, corporations and non-working individuals utilise their time to work for orphanage workshops, Microsoft Office workshops in schools and orphanages, medical camps in slums and villages and teacher training programmes. The mission of the organisation is to give a platform to the youth to come forward and work for an alleviation of society.
What inspired Rahul to start Juvenile Care? He says,
“In 2010, before entering college, a personal incident happened in which my maid’s son got injured through the nails thrown by me. Later he suffered from a Tetanus infection. Watching him in pain, I realised that there are a lot of similar kids who suffer, but get no attention. I wanted to do something, but didn’t know how. So later that day, I went through a slum in New Delhi to know the exact reason and the problem I am fighting for. I saw poverty, sanitation problems, medical problems and bias against girl children. But there was one thing above all responsible and that was improper education. After knowing the problem, I exactly knew what I had to do. With my journey so far, I have realised that there is an insect [sic] of social welfare in all, but what is lacked is the correct platform to flourish it. My main aim has been to provide this platform to myself and people like me”
Juvenile Care Projects: Project EHSAAS is an initiative working towards eradicating child labour and poverty. Project KAGAZ helps recycles paper by binding it to make registers for schoolchildren. Project UNIED is a teaching workshop that implements new teaching methodologies for primary school teachers. They also have a handful of other projects like Sparsh, Vidhya, Muskaan Save The Girl Child.
Juvenile Care – Timeline
2010 – The idea for Juvenile Care emerged, with an aim to provide youth a platform for child welfare and child abuse eradication activities and campaigns
2011 – Juvenile Care did its first slum project Sparsh in 2011 in Kalasipalyam, Bangalore.
2012 – After establishing in Bangalore, Juvenile Care expanded to VIT University, Vellore as an official centre for child rights.
2013 – Reached over 3,000 volunteers across country
2014 – Reached over 10,000 volunteers across country
2015 – Juvenile Care is looking forward to UniEd (education event) in March 2015
Juvenile Care is funded through CSR and their events marketing. They also charge their volunteers a minimal membership fee betweenRs100-200. In return, college students part of Juvenile Care receive on-ground experience of social work and awareness. The same students also organise CSR-based big-budget initiatives through which they gain experience of public relations, marketing and corporate partnerships.
After running Juvenile Care for 5 years, YourStory asked Rahul what his personal discoveries were, to which he replied,
“In the past four years, I never realised when I turned up to be a motivational speaker from being an introvert person. Four years back, when I went with my first CSR partnership proposal to an MNC, I was kicked out from the office due to my poor communication skills. Today, after completing over 400 sponsorship meetings, I definitely find my first meeting as a major learning milestone. I believe that its not about today’s youth being diverted or being spoilt. It’s just that everyone is good at something and all it takes is to provide them with a platform. There is a reason behind 50 being the rank of India in Olympics and 50 being the number of gold medals won by USA. When I look back, one of the biggest mistakes I had done was that I had failed to balance my academics and passion. And learning from that, my main aim is to complete my graduation and take Juvenile Care to heights. Keep on motivating people, giving them their platform and giving this society my best.”
What is ahead for Juvenile Care?
“In coming months,” says Rahul, “apart from basic social activities across India, we are looking forward to UniEd in the month of March 2015. It’s aimed at providing a better methodology of teaching to government and private school teachers across Karnataka from 10 dignified educationists. Also, we’re working at a ‘House Wife Cell’ aiming at a group of housewives going to slums and villages and conducting workshops to empower girl child education and sanitation issues for girls.”
What keeps Rahul going
“Learning is what keeps me excited. With every moment, every second, every experience, I learn a different thing. I love interacting with people, interacting with youth. I train college students and some employees for their client interaction skills and soft skills. Watching them learn, watching them change and improve is what drives me to help them more. Four years back when I started Juvenile Care, there was nobody to teach me what I teach today. I believe in sharing the knowledge I have gained with my journey. Whenever I am free, I spend a lot of my time in orphanages and villages and help them learn. Watching the children smile is what gives me a good sleep at night.”