Who are you supporting? – Victims of a forced and created war
Over 25000 people ( civilians, security personnel and extremists ) have died in the Left Wing Extremism violence ( commonly known as ‘naxal violence’ ) since 1980 with at least one life every single day over a 35-year period beginning 1980 and a majority of those killed were civilians.Violence because of naxalism affects 25% of India ( Tracking the naxal death toll ) .
Sukma southernmost aadivasi ( tribal ) district of Chhattisgarh infamous of the frequent encounters between naxal forces and security forces, is one of the most backward region of the country witnessing some of the worst tragedies of modern day India in terms of human rights violation, conflict linked deaths , displacing villagers. A glimpse into socio-economic conditions of the region:
1. Out of 142 Gram Panchayats 42 - sensitive, 37 - highly sensitive and 62 - extremely sensitive
2. 60% of GPs with poor or no road connectivity
3.11 bank branches mostly one manned branches
4. 3 petrol pumps only at district headquarter for national highway covering approx 200 kms
5. Posters, slogans, loudspeakers, gram sabhas not allowed due to naxal pressure
6. Extreme cases of mal-nutrition in the region.
7. Severely affected by vector-borne diseases.
8. In places like Chintagufa, ration is delivered by security forces every six months.
While delivery of services are delayed and inaccessible, destruction of property happens, human rights violations are often heard of, it is the children who have been the most vulnerable forcing problems that might exist for generations to come owing to lack of education and resulting in exploitation, health issues, livelihood challenges and poor socio-economic conditions.
We through Project Shiksharth are addressing the problem of access to quality education and improving the education status for naxal affected tribal children.Most of the children we work with come from families/villages affected by naxal violence.
An overview of the Education Status:
In Sukma alone because of the conflict:
1. Schools at 36 locations were destroyed
2. Basic education services got affected for 20000 children
3. Literacy rate of just 34%.
4. Over 300 school are completely/partially inaccessible for the 50000 children in Sukma alone
And as per state government report children going to elementary schools in Sukma:
1. 65% children cant read,
2. 75% lack basic addition/subtraction
3. 94% children don’t have basic understanding of scientific concepts being taught.
Apart from the above:
1. 70% children don’t understand classroom language in class 1 and 2 that is Hindi
2. 90% of the school going children speak local dialects like Gondi, Halbi.
3. Maximum children a part of linguistic minority
4. It takes 3 years for a tribal child entering class 1 to understand the language of teacher and textbook.
Project Shiksharth: Focus and Approach
Since late 2015 we have been working in Sukma on ground with the children, communities and government with the approach to delivering quality education solutions to naxal affected children. Our approach has been:
Activities and Impact made in last 2 years
While in regions like Sukma, concrete impact can only be seen after 8-10 years of intervention yet we have had our moments of achievement to be happy about in the past 2 years. We have directly impacted 2000+ children and indirectly contributing to better education for more than 25000 children through the programs we have designed.
A glimpse of the initiatives and their impact:
- 1.5 times growth in learning level of the children in our classrooms through our work on Multi-Lingua Education and Contextual Pedagogy
- 13 localized science modules developed using low cost resource and 120+ workshops done over 200 hours impacting close to 2000 children as part of the Science Education Program.
- Designed and implemented Chhattisgarh’s first science theme based park which has impacted more than 15000 children over 2 years
- 6th standard tribal students Roshan Sodi being awarded by Honourable President of India for his idea in handling EVM machines during elections as part of IGNITE competition where we reached out to 3000 children, 500 teachers leading to 1000+ ideas. 6 students selected at national level for final round
- Over 1000+ out of school children back to main stream education because of Project Gyanodaya ( an initiative by district administration ) designed by us and currently being run completely by us.
Apart from the above:
1.Directly impacted 2000+ children and indirectly contributing to better education for more than 25000 children through the programs we have designed.
2. Supporting local administration:
a) Designed Sukma Education cities Centre of Excellence – Gyanodaya Project.
b) Contribution in designing of education city and hubs model which has been chosen as top 10 innovations in public administration by central government during Civil Service Day 2017.
c) Contributing towards Designing and implementation of residential summer camp ‘ Ullas’ reaching out 3000 children directly and 15000+ indirectly.
d) Directly working full time in 5 residential schools (500 seater ) and helping in the school operation impacting 2500 children coming from naxal affected villages.
a) Exposure trips to Pune
b) Celebrating giving and community service during DaanUtsav where 1000+ children come together to do community service
c) 1 years of sanitary pads supply for 1000 girls in tribal schools.
An amount of 10 lakhs will help us serve close to 2500 children directly in school and serve 500 out of school children from extremely affected villages of Sukma. Also indirectly impact the lives of more than 30000 children.
The donations made will be used towards:
1. Honorarium for volunteers and staff who work full time in Sukma being away from their families. A team of 10-12 people working full time in Sukma
2. Material cost towards Developing resources for children
3. Capacity building of the team.
All donations are eligible for tax exemption through 80G which will be provided as part of donation receipt.
Project Shiksharth supported by Unlearning Foundation has also gathered support in terms of finances, mentorship and volunteers by Wipro Foundation, Acumen India, India Fellows, Gyan Prabodhni- Pune.
We also have MoU with the District Administration -Sukma and Department of School Education -Government of Chhattisgarh to replicate our initiatives in other parts of the state.