Chennai, March 24 (IANS) A non governmental organisation Saturday launched a computer training programme here for girls from underprivileged families in an effort to combat trafficking by enabling them access to information to check of job proposal.
At the new training centre, set up by Indian Community Welfare Organization (ICWO), a little girl called Gayathri bubbled with enthusiasm. 'This is the first time I am seeing a computer. It is going to be very useful to me, I am told,' she said.
'I don't have any computer knowledge and I have never handled a computer ever before. This is a very good opportunity for me to learn about this machine everyone talks about,' added her friend Saraswathy.
For these girls, who do not know anything about computers, the programme will be an opportunity to learn about handling and operating a computer, without having to pay any fees.
Shanthi, a mother, said: 'It really helps the children to know about computers and a chance to earn well in the future.'
The computer-training centre has 20 computers and 60 children in three batches will receive training on a regular basis. It is being funded by ASSET Foundation (Achieving Sustainable Social Equality through Technology), a USA-based NGO.
US vice-consul David Feldmann inaugurated the training centre.
'The ICWO is committed to stop girl children from being trafficked for commercial sexual exploitation in Chennai,' ICWO secretary A.J. Hariharan said on the occasion. The NGO works with 646 vulnerable children in selected areas of the city.
'This project aims to prevent the second generation from being trafficked and to improve the quality life of those children,' he added.
Vice Consul David Feldmann pointed out that the State Department recognised human trafficking as a great problem in India and the USA.
'A report published by the US State Department every year on trafficking, for the year 2005-2006, recognised Tamil Nadu's efforts in combat trafficking in persons,' he said. He said the State Department recognised that organisations like the ICWO were key players in Tamil Nadu.
International policing agencies estimate 700,000 persons, mostly women and children are trafficked internationally each year.
In India, it is estimated that 22,480 women and 44,476 children are missing and one fourth of such cases remain untraced till end, and are assumed to be victims of trafficking.