- Posted April 30, 2014 by
Los Angeles, California
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Photo essays: Your stories in pictures
Abandoned Children Find Hope
The unstable political situation in Nepal has had a major impact on the infrastructure of its society and its children. Development was severely hit by the 10-year civil war between Maoist rebels and state security forces that ended in 2006. More than 12,800 people were killed and an estimated 100,000 to 150,00 people were internally displaced. Although the war ended in 2006 with the signing of peace accords, the suffering has not ended for Nepal's youth. One estimate is that at least 10,000 children have been orphaned and more than 100,000 forced to leave their homes. Nepal suspended its adoption program in 2007 amid concerns of child trafficking. and although new regulations were introduced in 2008, concerns persist.
The initial optimism that greeted the end of the war quickly faded as a series of governments have failed to provide access to basic services such as electricity and clean water. Eradicating inequality and social exclusion remain major challenges to this day.
It is estimated that over 5,000 children are working and living on the streets with around 12,000 women and children being trafficked to India every year. In Nepal, there is only one Children's Hospital and sixty thousand children die before they their reach 5th birthday because of its inadequate health care system.
Nepal continues to have the number one child disappearance rate in the world, with approximately 3 million children involved in child labor with poor working conditions.
Although the statistics are mind blowing, hope has arrived through many charities providing basic shelter, food, clothing, and education for Nepal's orphans. Primarily supported through donations from around the world, these homes give Nepal's youth a chance for a future amidst a war torn country with few resources.