Youth Leaving Care Report 2019 by Aditya Yatri

SAFP team member,  Aditya is a National Leader of Youth Leaving Care (YLC).  He works probono to develop the Association of Youth who need to leave orphanages at the age of 18 years and have little guidance apart from the help they may get from staff members of the orphanage or Child Care Institution (CCI) that looked after them.

Aditya has demonstrated commitment and perseverance to promote the cause of the YLC since the past three years. He has represented the voice of the YLC in  different forums. Recognising his commitment  he was appointed by the Women and Child Development Department, Maharashtra in the committee that  drafted the  19th June 2019 guideline for Aftercare Programme in Maharashtra. That perhaps is the first ever guideline which emerged as a result of consultation from the YLCs.

Aditya grew up in SOS and as a care leaver and he continues to travel to different parts of India motivating YLCs to become aware of their rights and responsibilities for example he reached out to YLC in Odisha, Goa and Karnataka and conducted awareness meetings with them on what they can do do if groups of youth connect on whats apps to help each other. He conducted state level meeting with Orphan Youth (YLCs) in the Chembur Aftercare Hostel at 28th July 2018.

He got a lot of support from Udayan Care that invited him to their events  and he also has supported them in Maharashtra for  networking and resource mobilization for their Current Aftercare Practices (CAP) research. He attended the 3rd Bicon International conference on ‘Evolving Trends in Alternative Care for Children and Youth’, with a focus on South Asia, on the 16th & 17th March 2018 at Amity University, Noida, Delhi NCR. In that conference helped to set up Delhi CLAN and SYLC network.

Aditya has trained Young adults in the Aftercare Homes in Mumbai, Goa and Delhi for the legal documentation. He is aware that the process of getting certificates to avail benefits from government schemes requires  support from CCIs as well as the government. Some Government orders get passed but implementation has loop holes. Aditya gathers the Youth Leaving Care to understand where gaps are to address these. One of his efforts were to inform the government how the  implementation of 1% reservation in Educational institutions and jobs can be responsive for orphans in Maharashtra. Towards this Aditya reached out to 20 care leavers and followed their process by applying for the benefits under the scheme to document the gaps.

 

In preparation of the 5th National Conference on Juvenile Justice chaired by Hon’ble Mr. Justice Gupta at 6th April 2019 Aditya participated in the round table of thought leaders and practitioners for reforming services for children under the Juvenile Justice Act.  Aditya is a thought leader who if supported for a period of five years can develop the National Youth Leaving Care Association of India. SAFP upholds Adityas work to make his vision a reality.

 

Hon’ble Mr. Justice Gupta, Chairman of National Juvenile Justice Committee and Mr. Aditya Yatri.

At a one day conference on de institutionalization, after care, independent living organized by UNICEF and TISS, Mumbai on 24th May 2019, Aditya Yatri presented his paper on the issues, challenges and solution for the Youth Living Care in Maharashtra. The Department of Women and Child Development, GoM and UNICEF had hosted a Learning Exchange on Alternative Care with Hopes and Homes, UK in Mumbai on 18 and 19 June, 2019. The Learning Exchange in Maharashtra is proposed for the States of Goa, Gujarat and Maharashtra and will bring together critical stakeholders – Government, Child Welfare Committees, State Commission for Protection of Child Rights and CSOs who could take forward the care reform agenda in relation to de institutionalization, gate keeping and family based care for children in the Juvenile Justice System. In this workshop Aditya Yatri  shared his experiences while working with youth leaving care and ideas of participation of children and young adults into decision making at policy, programme and activities.

Currently Aditya is interning with Pune International Centre for the drafting a policy paper on Aftercare Programme for Young adult Orphan in India and also pursuing Ph.D from Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai on “The Journey of Orphan and Destitute Youth in Aftercare Programme in Maharashtra”. Aditya needs to be supported though mentoring as well as financial support to set up the Youth Leaving Care Association. This organisation will need support of CCIs but it has to be led by YLCS themselves. Please reach out to Aditya directly at charegaonkar.aditya@gmail.com with a copy to safp.sb@gmail.com.