Child Protection – Sindh

Promoting Child Rights in Cotton Farming Areas of Pakistan

The engagement of children in the labor force is driven by higher poverty ratios, a practice which is further entrenched due to the widespread acceptance and cultural practice of using children in the labor force. These practices are more common in rural areas of Pakistan, where 27 million children are engaged in child labor in the agricultural sector. The Pakistani agricultural sector has low rates of mechanisation and the use of low wage labor is rampant; cotton pickers are paid as little as 50-80 rupees per day. In order to meet day to day expenses, people from these families often take out loans in advance against their expected income from picking cotton but are not always able to repay these loans, which means they get trapped in a vicious circle of debt. In order to repay loans, these families also engage their children in cotton picking. In addition, the belief that soft hands are ideal for picking cotton encourages the use of young women and children as cotton-pickers.As a result, children drop out of school to work in cotton fields and risk exposure to various forms of violence and abuse.


Project Description

The project contributed in the overall agreement between UNICEF and Government of Pakistan on child rights protection. One of the areas of this arrangement was to strengthen institutional capacity to implement child rights protection legislation, policies and standards to protect children and women from abuse, exploitation and violence. DevCon played its part in household data collection of selected villages from two districts in Sindh as sample.

Project Details

  • Supporter: UNICEF
  • Date: April 1 to May 30, 2013
  • Category: Child Protection
  • Location: Daharki and Ubaro Talukas of Dist. Ghotki, Sindh
  • Budget: Rs. 1,677,800/-
  • Download: N/A

Project Participants

  • Villages: 110
  • Households: 10,000
  • Main Activities: Development of Tools, Data Collection, Reporting