This project brief summarizes IMPAQ’s randomized control trial of Bal Mitra Gram (or Child-Friendly Villages) child labor reduction program in India. This program is implemented by Nobel laureate Kailash Satyarthi’s well-established NGO Bachpan Bachao Andolan (BBA) – the largest grassroots movement for the protection of children in India. Implemented in Jharkhand state, an area with high incidences of child labor in mica mining, this two-year program is BBA’s signature intervention to directly combat child labor.
IMPAQ is implementing a randomized control trial to assess the impact of the child labor reduction program. We randomly assigned 20 villages into a treatment group that receives Bal Mitra Gram, and a control group that does not. The randomization ensures that the villages have the same average socio-economic characteristics at the beginning of the program. After the intervention, any detected differences in child labor incidents between the two groups can then be solely attributed to the program. This evaluation is part of a cross-country series of ILAB evaluations that IMPAQ is conducting in Malawi, Costa Rica, Ecuador, and Rwanda.