Future Hope is a charitable organisation,which provides opportunity through its homes, school and programmesfor some of the most vulnerable children from the streets and slums of Kolkata, India.
Problem to be tackled
In contrast to life on the streets where personal survival is the driving force and each child has to look out for him or herself, playing sport helps the children to learn trust, teamwork, self-discipline, determination and self-confidence. These are all skills that enable the children to adapt and thrive in the Future Hope community and also prepare them for later life.
Future Hope, est. 1987, aims to give vulnerable street and slum children of Kolkata in India and its surroundings a stable environment to reach their full potential and become independent, self-sufficient and socially responsible young adults.
In 1987, while working for HSBC bank in Kolkata, Tim Grandage befriended a group of street children who looked after his car. Through meeting and talking with them he became aware of their numerous problems and needs, and realised he could not turn a blind eye to their plight. Tim’s involvement with the Nabu Jeeban centre run by Mother Theresa’s brothers also brought him into close contact with street kids who eked out an existence at Howrah Station. Tim soon moved a group of children into his own flat and looked after their most pressing medical and other needs. Within a couple of years he had left HSBC and enlisted the bank’s support for his new found charity. Having learnt that many street children in Kolkata gravitated to the main stations of Howrah and Sealdah, Tim often visited these places at night to try to persuade the most vulnerable to join those boys and girls already at Future Hope.
The Beneficiaries are Kolkata’s street children.
While some street children are orphans the majority have been driven from their homes by abuse, family breakdown and extreme poverty. Others are the by-products of the sex industry, turned out onto the streets while their mothers work, and yet more have been trafficked from other parts of India to be forced into labour and prostitution.
Some children enjoy the freedom life on the streets can offer and may even earn reasonable money scouring arriving trains, sorting rubbish or becoming expert petty thieves, but they remain vulnerable to victimisation, exploitation and abuse, and are exposed to extremely unhygienic conditions.
To cope with all this many resort to glue sniffing and drug taking, both growing problems in Kolkata and ones which can seriously damage a child’s brain and reduce life expectancy. Future Hope has developed a good understanding with the Kolkata police and works closely with them to reach out to as many children as possible and offering homes where they can enjoy their own space, study in peace and reap the benefits of a stable life.
Between the years 2017 and 2019, The SOL Foundation helps to provide the basics of the annual sport programme at Future Hope with Cricket, Rugby, Football and Rowing, Extra-Curricular Activities, the School Athletic Meet as well as assisting with equipment – for the benefit of the organisation’s around 250 students and children.
Future Hope has a number of homes for boys and for girls, which provide accommodation for children ranging in age from five to nineteen. The Future Hope School offers education from kindergarten to Class 12 (A level equivalent) both to children from their homes and to children from nearby slums who attend as day scholars. Day scholars make up about half of all the pupils in the 250 strong school. Sport and many other activities broaden their horizons and foster their talents. Once they have completed their schooling, Future Hope helps the young adults to move into higher education, training or paid employment.