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India has 440 million children. That is more than the entire population of North America (USA, Mexico and Canada put together). Every fifth child in the world is Indian.

 

And what sort of life do these children have as they grow up? Well, they face some of the toughest challenges of anyone:

In 2007 the Indian Government published the results of one of the world\'s largest and most sophisticated studies on child abuse, carried out in conjunction with Unicef and Save the Children. This detailed research on over 12,000 children produced some shocking conclusions:

So this is some of the context from which so many children choose, or are forced, to leave their home or village and end up in a city like Delhi.

      •     Two thirds of children are victims of physical abuse. The majority are beaten in school, and over half have to work seven days a week.
      •     Over 50% have faced some kind of sexual abuse, and over 20% of them severe abuse.
      •     Half of children also face emotional abuse.