February 28, 2009

‘Slumdog’ credited for higher Indian aid

An official with an international charity says the movie Slumdog Millionaire has triggered more interest in helping children in India.

ActionAid fundraising director Richard Turner said the film about a young man from the slums of India has caused a surge of interest in sponsoring Indian children, The Daily Telegraph reported Saturday.

We're calling it the 'Slumdog' effect. We haven't seen such a high level of interest in one country for a long time, Turner said.

During the week after Slumdog captured best picture honors at the Feb. 8 British Academy of Film and Television Arts awards, ActionAid received 1,400 inquiries about Indian sponsorship. That number was a dramatic rise from the charity's weekly average of little more than 500 inquiries.

The Telegraph said it is estimated that India is home to millions of street children, some of whom endure 10 to 12-hour work days.

Child sponsorship has transformed the lives of hundreds of thousands of children and is one of the most rewarding ways of giving, Turner told the newspaper.