ELIMINATION OF CHILD LABOUR IN TOBACCO GROWING IN KYRGYZSTAN

Kyrgyzstan Project Results, 2007-2010

Kyrgyzstan_2007_2010_Results_Gray_Box

withdrawal Withdrawal
In each village, committees of public health services were created. On average, in a village with 1,000 farms, committees consisted of 7-8 members. Committee members raised awareness among the community at public events about the health hazards of child labour in tobacco growing and helped identify children engaged in tobacco growing.

education Education
In 2009, 110 schools in Nookat held competitions for the best writing composition, best drawing and best drama representation of “No child labour in tobacco growing.” There was also a competition for the best work among school parliaments on the same theme. 125 writing compositions from 75 schools were submitted, and 16 pupils awarded prizes; 159 drawings from 16 schools were submitted and 10 pupils were awarded prizes. Six schools were awarded prizes for organising a dedicated area in their school to display promotional materials about the hazards of children working in tobacco growing. Furthermore, a biology teacher conducted a lesson on the dangers children face when working in tobacco growing. A ceremony was held, attended by senior dignitaries, on 12th June itself in Culture House in Nookat at which 600 pupils from 110 schools attended.

At Usalieva school there was a roundtable meeting and seminar for schoolchildren. Children themselves identified reasons for the prevalence of child labour – low-living standards, unemployment, outflow of human resources abroad and elsewhere in the country. Children also noted that adults had begun to observe the right of children to attend school.

awareness Awareness
  • World Day Against Child Labour was successfully exploited for awareness-raising opportunities in each of the three years of the project.
  • Workshops raising awareness about child labour were held for farmers. They focused on the dangers of child labour and ways to tackle it. These sessions also discussed successful strategies in other countries, with particular emphasis on the creation of public associations.
  • Two items were broadcast on Kyrgyzstan national radio with a description of the aims and intended outcomes of the project.
  • Project staff undertook visits to farmers that had not yet become involved in the project.
  • In 2007, an essay-writing contest was held on the theme of “No Child Labour in Tobacco-growing.” Prizes of a TV set, a DVD player, and disks and a tape recorder were awarded. Prize-giving was attended by the head of the local education department, the head of Social Protection, directors from eight schools and representatives from the project. T-shirts were also produced with the slogan “No child labour in tobacco” and a documentary film about child labour made by ILO-IPEC was also shown.
  • In 2008, a drawing competition was held and 102 drawings were submitted by children. Prizes of school bags and writing materials totalling 10,000 KG Soms were awarded to the winning pupils.
  • Further seminars were also conducted to encourage children to deliver the messages about child labour for themselves. Children themselves decided to:
  • Hold sessions of school parliaments on the theme “No child labour in tobacco growing”;
  • Designate a room in each school to publish and display a newspaper on child labour;
  • Undertake spot-checks of children working in tobacco fields instead of attending school;
  • Organise meetings with parents whose children work in tobacco;
  • Organise competitions and drama sketches for village communities;
  • Carve the letters “ECLT” – each letter being six metres high and four metres wide – on the mountainside near to Nookat’s main road.
  • Awareness-raising sessions for all stakeholders were held with representatives of state local governments, public health services, trade unions NGOs, tobacco companies and farmers, the commission on family and women’s affairs, and the committee on youth affairs and minors.
  • The project team undertook an awareness-raising activity in the form of a quiz – prizes of a photo-album, an album with pencils and cases, writing books and felt-tip pens were awarded. Each child received a file with material about the project and information on child labour. Two films about child labour made by the ILO were screened. On the official closing day of their holiday, musical and theatrical shows were held for the children. This was shown on national TV news.
capacity Strengthening Communities
  • In 2008, a total of US $9,335 was spent organising summer medical camps for 150 children (76 from Nookat and 74 in Alabuka).
  • Farmers from every MAG met to decide which children should attend the camp.
  • In 2009, 202 children (122 children in Nookat and 80 in Alabuka) were sent for medical rehabilitation at the summer camp.
poverty Alleviating Poverty
  • A new micro-credit agency “Jamaattar Kireshesi” was contracted by the project.
  • The main criteria for issuing the microcredit was that the families were economically vulnerable and relied on child labour in the family.
  • Families were selected by social workers, representatives of trade unions of rural Boards.
  • The agency carried out training on credit applications, the writing of business plans and the collation of necessary documents.
  • In 2008, 40 Mutual Aid Groups (MAGs) consisting of 307 families received microcredits totalling 3,070,000 KG Soms. All the families repaid the loans without any delay at the end of the year.
  • In 2009, the project expanded to cover seven more “aiyl okmotu” (rural administration areas).
  • In the first quarter of 2009, Nookat therefore selected a further 180 families who were awarded 2,160,000 KG Soms with an interest rate of 10%.
  • In Alabuka in the same period, 100 families received microcredits, totalling 1,200,000 KG Soms, with the same interest rate.
  • This amounted to 12,000 KGS per family and included 1,003 children. As with the previous project, the loan was granted to them on the condition that child labour was not used for tobacco-growing.
  • At the end of 2009, the entire credit capital had been repaid by farmers.
  • 109 families – including 335 children – were lifted out of poverty by the project.
  • A further 171 families also achieved higher living standards and were raised fromthe poorest category.