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The Railway Child Help Desk (RCHD) is a joint initiative of Ministry of Women and Child Development and Ministry of Railways to ensure the care and protection, security and well- being of run-away, unaccompanied and trafficked children who come in contact with the railways. ATMA Foundation is the collaborative partner of Childline India Foundation for the implementation of Railway Child Help Desk service in Thrissur District. ATMA RCHD started functioning at Thrissur Railway Station on 1 st May 2018. The ATMA RCHD team, led by Project Director C K Suresh, consists of 12 members – including a Coordinator, a Counsellor, 7 Team members and 3 volunteers. The ATMA RCHD Kiosk at Platform No.1, Thrissur Railway Station, as per SOP, is manned 24x7 by 3 personnel.

RCHD Activities:

1. Child Rescue & Protection:

  • Platform Observation , Train Observation & Premises Observation to identify children in need
  • Providing immediate assistance – food, medical support, counselling, etc
  • Ensuring the child’s safety through Government mechanisms – taking the child to the Child Welfare Committee, reconciling with family, etc

2. Regular Outreach

Daily outreach among passengers and railway stakeholders in the trains, railway platform and premises

3. Special Awareness Programs

Innovative mass awareness drives are conducted on special days like International Child Helpline Day, Anti Child Labour Day, Childline se Dosthi Week, etc. Poster distribution, spot quiz, oath taking, signature campaigns, etc are done to reach out to the larger public, and to increase the visibility of Childline services.

Support Systems

1. Child Rescue & Protection:

The RCHD closely networks and collaborates with various Govt agencies and their personnel.
This includes:

  • The Station Director, Station Manager & Railway Staff at Thrissur Railway Station
  • The Railway protection Force & the GRP
  • The unorganised sector at the Thrissur Railway Station
  • The Child Welfare Committee, Thrissur
  • Childline Nodal office at Vimala College, Thrissur
  • ChildlineCollab Office at Christina Home, Thrissur

To support the effective functioning of the RCHD, the Child Help Group has been formed at the Thrissur Railway Station, with the involvement and participation of all Railway Stakeholders. The CHG has regular meetings, where RCHD activities are reviewed and suggestions for improvement discussed.

ATMA- Going an extra mile…

ATMA Foundation extends support to the various stakeholders in the Railway Station premises, and the inhabitants of the Railway Colony. This includes initiatives like distribution of free school kits to the children in the Railway colony, grocery kits to the daily wage workers, etc.