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House of Hope in Kolkata, India is a place of refuge for kids living on the streets. The team of 8 staff members runs the center where the children come each weekday and receive food, education and medical care. They also organize soccer games for older street boys twice a week, and visit the families living on the streets in the evenings to build a closer relationship with them, in order to help them to find ways to escape life on the streets. The House of Hope was founded by an incredible woman named Lochumlo. Loch is from the Northeastern part of India, and has a passion to help those living on the streets of Kolkata.

Sangeeta in the House of Hope home


Sangeeta
Sangeeta is 10 years old. She has gone through many tragedies in her life. This fiery little girl with a sweet smile, has been on a journey that would break anyone's heart. Sangeeta comes from a Hindu family with one older sister, one younger brother and a father who drinks and abuses them verbally and physically.

Sangeeta lost her mother on 2 different occasions. Once her father beat her up in a drunken state, and she ran away from their place on the sidewalk, that they call home. She returned a couple weeks later. The second time she ran away, it was to join another man. She was tragically killed by her lover, who doused her with acid all over her body.

Sangeeta knows that her mother is dead, but prays regularly for God to bring her back to life. The staff tried to explain to her that her mother can't come back to life, but she is confused by her Hindu beliefs. While grieving the loss of her mother, the father took all the children to the grandmother's house and abandoned them there. Sangeeta's grandmother severely abused her and her sister day after day. Finally, Sangeeta and her sister were able to escape their tragic lives. They have come into the House of Hope and now have a life filled with love and hope.
The New House of Hope Building
The House of Hope has just moved into a new and beautiful building. Many children have come into the new building, and now call this place 'home'. When girls live on the streets, physical and sexual abuse are common occurrences. The new House of Hope offers a place of safety for these precious children. House of Hope is now offering tailoring classes for the girls, and they are learning how to make beautiful dresses.

Many individuals, groups and churches donated generously to purchase and renovate this amazing new facility. They recently celebrated the dedication of the new building with friends, volunteers, children and families.

Photography by Nathan Golden.