On 3rd December 2020, we found Amir a 14-year-old boy wandering around at the Ghaziabad railway station. He seemed worried and stressed when our staff member approached him. It was after a brief introduction about RCI and how it works that Amir agreed to go along to the Child Assistance Booth.

During the interaction, Amir told us that he stays in Ghaziabad and had left home to go to his uncle’s place. He was provided with food and water at the child assistance booth as he mentioned that he was hungry. After a brief introduction, Amir was then sent to the Child Welfare officer to complete the further process and was then transferred to the open shelter.

Amir’s stay at the shelter home

After coming to the open shelter, Amir was gifted with a welcome kit and was introduced to the staff and children living there. During the counselling session at the open shelter, Amir shared that his mother scolded him and physically punished him for not paying attention to his studies because of which he left home. He further added that they belong to Muzaffarpur district but were currently living in Ghaziabad due to his father’s job posting. He said that he has a younger sibling and he feels left out because his mother pays more attention and pampers the younger one. Amir said that his parents own farmlands at their native place but there is a land dispute going on because of which they had to shift to Ghaziabad.

During his stay at the shelter, he was introduced to daily activities and games which helped Amir in developing his social skills and was also provided with constant counselling sessions. The counsellor observed that, Amir was interested in mathematics and calculations and he would share the tricks with his fellow friends at the shelter and dreamed of becoming in the field of mathematics also, Amir was a keen learner.  Amir was engaged in non-formal activity-based learning and also various group exercises which helped in further enhancing his social learnings and identify his strengths and weaknesses. He also developed a keen interest in operating computer and would like to further learn the advanced levels of operating on a computer.

Tracing his family

After Amir spent a few days at the shelter, tour team tried contacting his parents with the help of address and contact number provided by him. We contacted his parents and asked them to come to the shelter to pick Amir up along with proper documentation.

Family counselling sessions

On 7th December 2020, Amir’s family came to the shelter and had a family counselling session with our counsellor. During which the counsellor told how Amir is a very talented student and he feels left out because of his younger sibling. The counsellor suggested that the parents should pay equal attention to both the kids and their emotional health. His parents then assured that they will take proper care of Amir and try to bridge the gap between them. Amir was then called up to meet his parents and after completing the documents verification, he was sent back home with his parents.

On 15th December 2020, during the follow up call by the counsellor, we found that Amir was safe and happy at home. Amir said, “I am happy to be back home and engaged in studies and my parents are paying attention to me.”