Begu Sarai

SOS Children’s Villages supports individual children, young people and families so that they can thrive (photo: SOS Children’s Villages India).

Begu Sarai is a city located in the Bihar state in Northeastern India. Around 250,000 people live in the city.The state of Bihar is one of the most populous states in India, but also one of the poorest ones. Around 50% of the state’s population are living in poverty, and 51% suffer from food deprivation. Bihar’s economy is mainly focused on agriculture, but this sector is affected by regular floods and droughts. People in Begu Sarai do not only have to deal with poverty and natural disasters, but also with gender inequality and malnutrition. Children are most vulnerable to these different aspects of life in Begu Sarai.

Since 2005, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families and advocating for their rights in Begu Sarai

Of girls forced into marriage

Children vulnerable for inequality

Gender inequality is a major issue in Bihar. For example, in the state, 45% of girls were forced into marriage before the age of 18. This is one of the highest percentages in India, and it has already decreased from 75% in the past. Child marriage is a violation of the universal declaration of human rights, and the emotional damage a child suffers from a forced union is profound. Furthermore, literacy rates in Bihar speak for themselves: the literacy rate for men is 76%, while the literacy rate for women is 55%. This is mostly because girls are more likely to drop out of school than boys.

Children are underweight

Children risk malnutrition

Due to the prevalent poverty in Bihar state, food insecurity is still recurrent, and many people still suffer from acute hunger. Parents in the Bihar state struggle to provide enough nutritious food for their children. And thus, 41% of children are underweight. To be more specific, 42% of children in Bihar experience stunting (low height for age), a result from undernutrition. Furthermore, 22% of children experience wasting (low weight for height), which occurs when a child has not had enough good quality food. The government is offering food provision programmes in Bihar, however more needs to be done.

Your support makes a difference for children in Begu Sarai

SOS Children’s Villages works with local partners and communities to offer a wide range of support that is adapted to the local context. We always work in the best interest of the children, young people and families.
Can stay together
Children and young people
Grow up in our care
Young people
Are supported on their way to independence
Girls heading to school together in the morning. We work hard to make sure that children stay at school for as long as possible (photo: SOS Children’s Villages India).

How your support helps in Begu Sarai

Strengthening families and communities
When parents face hardships, they can sometimes struggle to give children the care they need. SOS Children’s Villages works with local partners and communities. Each family needs different support so that they can stay together. This support can include workshops on parenting and children’s rights. We also run training so that parents can get the skills they need to get a job or start their own businesses. Likewise, we ensure that children can get medical help and go to school.
Caring for children who cannot live with their families
Some children cannot stay with their families, even with additional support. When this happens, they can find a new home in SOS Children’s Villages. Here the children can build safe and lasting relationships. All the children in our care have access to education and healthcare. Wherever possible, we work closely with the children’s family of origin. If children can return to live with their families, we help them adapt to this change.
Supporting young people to become independent
To help young people become confident and independent, our local team works closely with each young person to develop a plan for their future. We support young people and also help them prepare for the labour market and increase their employment prospects. For example, young people can attend workshops and trainings run by SOS Children’s Villages. They also improve their skills through taking part in different projects with local mentors and businesses.