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H.E.L.G.O. e.V. - Help for Education and Life Guide Organisation

103 Belilious Road
711101 Howrah

Phone No.: +49 177 6181407
Fax No.:
Contact person: Sebastian Leidig


The non-profit organisation "Help for Education and Life Guide Organisation", H.E.L.G.O. for short, was founded in Hamburg in 1995. Also in that year, an Indian partner association with the same name (H.E.L.G.O. CHILD LABOUR PROJECT) was founded in Kolkata, to take over the work with the children on site.

Our work
There are an estimated 40 million child workers in India. We look after about 200 of these an our two bases in Kolkata / Howrah. This number seems very small, but H.E.L.G.O. focusses on every individual child. We know their background histories, help them to attend school and, where necessary, we support their families. After leaving school, each child is offered job training. For special problem cases we also have a hostel where the children can live and be provided for. We focus on individual child workers, not primarily on child labour in general.

We know that parents send their children out to work only because they have to. They are dependent on the income they bring in. A child who is looked after by H.E.L.G.O. is no longer a child worker. We make this possible by having a wages compensation grant sent to the family, in the form of foodstuffs and other goods for everyday needs. The children attend a public school, after which we give them a hot meal and help with their homework, without which they would not be able to cope with the demands of school. This compensation, as well as the daily meal for each child, is the basis for an education lasting many years. This tried and tested structure is what distinguishes H.E.L.G.O.

Our guiding principle
• Active participation is at the heart of our work. The prerequisite for taking a child into our project is his willingness to work consistently at school.
• Giving brings more happiness than taking. Everyone who receives our help should support the work of the project within the limits of his capabilities.
• Helping people to help themselves: our aim is to put the children in the position of leading an independent life and supporting themselves.
• Quality before quantity: we only take new children on when we are in a position to give them sufficient personal help.
• Administration and project work are not separate. With the exception of our financial administration department, all our office staff also work with the children at grass roots level.

Sebastian Leidig is the secretary of H.E.L.G.O. ("Help for Education and Life Guide Organisation").

On request we can offer other net participants advice, give a presentation, and provide up-to-date information and contacts in the field of our work.


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