Our successful interventions towards successful transitions of care leavers in the Udayan Ghar, and milestone research ‘Beyond 18’, conducted in 2018-19, covering more than 450 care-experienced youth in 5 states of India, led to the genesis of the AOP in 2020. In this programme, we identify and support, youth coming out of different Child Care Institutions, towards their education, vocational training, employment and empowerment. It directly supported 42 Aftercare youth in Delhi, and 12 youth in Gujarat in 2020. This year the program has expanded to 4 more cities, (Hyderabad, Ujjain, Bhopal and Indore) supporting over 170 youth.
This experience gave rise a desire to support other children and youth who are living in other CCIs and Aftercare homes. But this required an in-depth study of the situation of youth exiting CCIs (Care Leavers) for evidence building. This led to the first of its kind study on Aftercare in India, “Beyond 18”, to understand the situation of Care Leavers in India and how they can be supported.
The Aftercare Outreach Programme (AOP) is a logical spin-off of the “Beyond 18” research study on Aftercare, conducted by Udayan Care with support from UNICEF, Tata Trusts and a host of partners.
AOP is designed to address the unaddressed issues in the transition phase, while a child is still in a Child Care Institution (CCI) and later, in Aftercare, based on the ‘Sphere of Aftercare’; a theoretical framework proposed in the research study, a framework that outlines 8 domains of support needed: Housing, Physical health, Independent living skills, Education and vocational skills, Social support and interpersonal skills, Emotional Wellbeing, Identity and legal awareness, financial independence and career.
AOP aims to provide transition and rehabilitation support to Care Leavers through:
Skills: Training and Development – Workshops and Mentoring
Education/ vocational training: information, access, financial support