Millions of children around the world are forced to become laborers at a young age. They work for long hours without breaks for rest or play. Some work in physically difficult or dangerous jobs. Others endure emotional or physical abuse as servants. Children work to survive, provide for their family, or pay off parental debt. Not only do these kids miss out on childhood, but they also are denied the education needed to improve their situation. God intends for children to grow and flourish in a just society. As the people of God, we need to stand against unfair treatment of kids. Because God is looking out for the rights of children, we must also.
Child Labor Video
Hitting the Bricks Simulation
Reflect On It
Complete the Cycle of Poverty diagram. Fill in each blank with a word from the box:
What is God saying to me?
» Raj, a Child Laborer
» How Does It Feel?
Take A STAND!
Memorize Psalm 72:12. Use your prayer card to pray for child laborers. Find out what your church is already doing to minister to exploited children and how you might get involved. Get informed, pray, and speak up.
Visit the International Justice Mission website. Sign up to receive free updates about what’s going on around the world and find ways to join in the pursuit of justice for oppressed children (www.ijm.org).
Most child laborers in India are Dalits (dah-leets, untouchables). Considered the lowest of the low, Dalit families are denied access to jobs and education. Partner with the Dalit Freedom Network to give a child the opportunity to attend school at a Dalit Education Center. These centers teach the inherent value and dignity of all people. Your monthly gift provides for a child’s tuition, uniforms, school supplies, noon meals if necessary, and his teacher’s salary (www.dalitnetwork.org).
Find out about the history of child labor in your own country. For the United States, go to (www.historyplace.com/unitedstates/childlabor). For those living in other countries, do a web search using “child labor + your country.”