South AsiaERIKS Development Partner
ERIKS work in the region
In South Asia, ERIKS is working in India and Bangladesh. We work in partnership with local organisations using an integrated approach strengthening children’s rights to education, health and protection.
People learn about their rights and can hold authorities accountable. Climate change is visible in both India and Bangladesh with recurring floods devastating large areas. Therefore, our projects include disaster risk reduction and resilience strategies. We also respond to humanitarian crises when they touch India or Bangladesh.
In India, ERIKS works for vulnerable groups to become aware of their rights and how they can change their situation. Total villages have come on their feet and children’s voices are being heard and can change their situation through Children’s Parliament, a movement making democracy a reality.
In India close to all children go to school and economic development is in full swing. However, the gaps are great; millions of people are still living in exclusion and poverty. Malnourishment and child labour are still big issues. Discrimination against girls and women is deep-rooted in society and domestic violence is daily experienced by way too many.
Through the projects supported by ERIKS, people living in exclusion get tools to change their situation and get access to social services. Children get together in Child Parliaments and motivate each other to be consistent in education and promote initiatives for environmental protection. Disabled people receive social security schemes, authorities provide schools and people have learnt how to apply for improved infrastructure, such as clean water, sanitary latrines and roads.
Where governmental health efforts have been inadequate, ERIKS partner has identified the gaps and what can be done to reach the community and reduce child mortality. Village committees are activated to monitor activities implemented by the government health organization and make them accountable. Health- and childcare workers are trained to reach women and children in need of maternal- and child health care.
In Bangladesh ERIKS works for girls and boys to have access to health, education and protection. Communities living under constant threat of flooding are equipped with disaster preparedness and improve their living conditions to better counter recurring floods.
Bangladesh is one of the world’s most densely populated countries, with its people crammed into a delta of rivers that empties into the Bay of Bengal. In addition, since 2017 the country hosts the world’s largest refugee camp. Over the last ten years, Bangladesh has made significant progress in social development indicators such as female secondary schooling, infant mortality and child immunization. This despite a low per capita income and deep-rooted governance problems including corruption. However, many challenges remain; many children still lack access to health care and education. Child marriages and child labour are commonplace.
Through ERIKS´ projects many girls have got the opportunity of education and thereby escaped forced early marriages. Girls and boys have realised their own potential and are now participating in the development of their communities. Women subjected to violence and discrimination have received support to enhance their status and defend their rights. In the huge Rohingya refugee camp, ERIKS support health initiatives through the partner organization, Friendship, with special focus on nutrition.