As many as 120 child laborers in Madiun regency, East Java, have managed to resume their education after participating in a 25-day guidance program organized by the Child Labor Reduction Program.
This program, along with the Family Empowerment Program (PPA-PKH), aimed to reduce the number of children from impoverished households being forced to drop out of school to work, said Madiun Social Affairs, Manpower and Transmigration Agency head, Beny Adi Wijaya.
Of the 120 children, who came from 15 districts, 105 opted for formal education, one for non-formal education, or a Kejar Paket educational program, and the remaining 14 for training, he said.
He said the presence of these child laborers resulted from a “complex” set of circumstances that had impacted many impoverished families.
Children who were supposed to be studying during school hours ended up looking for money to make life easier for their parents, he said.
They ended up working in industries like mining and construction, or working as shoeshine boys, newspaper deliverers or as laborers, making tiles and bricks, said Beny.
"We hope that this program will help prevent children from returning to their lives as child laborers. They should be in school like other children. That's why we're going to continuously monitor these kids," he said as quoted by Antara news agency.
The Madiun administration is aiming to admit 3,000 child laborers on to the rehabilitation programs this year. (png/mtq)