Kailash Sathyarti risked his life many times in his dangerous struggle against child labour and slavery and for all children’s right to education.
As a young man, Kailash began risking his own life to free children being held as slaves at brickworks and factories. He founded Bachpan Bachao Andolan (BBA, Save Childhood Movement) and began building homes for liberated slave children. At that time, over 30 years ago, hardly anyone else in India was speaking up for these children’s rights. Kailash received death threats and was attacked, and two of his colleagues were killed, but he didn’t give up.
These days, Kailash and BBA have freed over 80,000 children, and his ‘Global March Against Child Labour’ campaign has grown into a movement involving millions of people. His work has contributed to new laws and regulations being passed to protect children’s rights all over the world. Kailash’s label for child labor-free rugs, GoodWeave, has reduced the number of children in the carpet industry from one million to 250,000, and thousands of poor villages have received his help to become ‘child friendly’. In 2014 Kailash received the WCP Honorary Award. In November of the same year, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize along with Malala Yousafzai