They made the association: Balaram, a young Nepalese accompanied in 2010

May 29, 2024

Balaram is now 22 years old.

His father died when he was 7. His mother remarried, leaving 3 children behind. Balaram went to live with his grandparents and siblings. They had to work hard in the fields and look after the livestock. Fed up, he fled to India with 3 friends. He survived for a while by begging on the streets, then joined a reception center. After 3 months, he escaped and returned to Nepal. He was only 8 years old...

"In 2009, when I returned to Kathmandu, I spent 1 year on the streets working as a garbage collector and begging. I suffered physical abuse, hunger and adult misconduct. Voice of Children [partner of Enfants & Développement *] rescued me in 2010. I spent 2 years in their socialization center. I rebuilt myself. I learned life skills, took part in many of the children's club activities and became aware of my rights. I also got ready to go back to school and reunited with my grandparents in my village."

Balaram returned to live with his grandparents in 2012 and started school, in 4th grade (equivalent to CM1). As he grew up, he became president of the children's club, and organized campaigns to clean up the environment in his village and protect children. Moreover, in 2021, as a young member of the advisory team, he took part in a day of general discussion on the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Balaram also has a passion for music. He trained as a musician and radio presenter.

Today, he says he's very happy. Alongside his studies - he is currently studying for a Bachelor's degree in journalism and communications - he works as a radio host at Lalitpur FM, as a singer and also as a model.

"My main goal in life is to become a popular singer and social worker.

Balaram with a group of children

Enfants & Développement (before it became Planète Enfants & Développement) and Voice of Children became partners in Nepal in 2001, and have been for many years.

They accompanied street children in Kathmandu, preparing them for reintegration into their families, schools and jobs.

Voice of Children still runs 2 centers: a temporary reception center where children stay for up to 3 months; and a socialization center to help them prepare for the future.

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