DIBRUGARH, March 7 � The ABITA, in partnership with the UNICEF State office in Assam, has been working to improve the quality of life of the tea workforce with several projects. Altogether 128 tea estates in upper Assam in the districts of Dibrugarh, Tinsukia and Sivasagar have been covered under a programme billed the Young Child Survival (YCS) Program.
Another such project called the Child Protection Programme was initiated in 2007 in Dibrugarh district and it is presently being extended to Tinsukia and Sivasagar districts where around 100 tea estates have been covered.
In another programme, UK Natcom has initiated a project on �Nutrition in Tea Gardens of Assam� aimed at reducing the prevalence of anaemia among adolescent girls through a comprehensive multi-sectoral approach. Altogether 9,785 households are being covered across 15 tea estates in Dibrugarh district in this pilot project.
Tea companies such as Amalgamated Plantations Private Ltd (APPL) having tea estates in upper Assam have embraced the project components to the fullest extent and several success stories have been collated on child protection. Namrup and Achabam tea estates have been in the forefront of preventing child marriage and cases of child abuse.
The Adolescent Girls Clubs (AGCs) in Naharkatia, Namrup, Achabam, Nahortoli, Powai and Chabwa tea estates have been extremely active in pursuing prevention of child marriage, sending the children to school, preventing dropouts, preventing child abuse and other forms of exploitation of children, including child trafficking.