In India today, 4% of our children never start school. 58% don’t complete primary schools. And 90% don’t complete school, the fact that only 10% of our children go on to college is a sad picture of a developing country where even a basic right of education are compromised.
Educational Centres for Children on the Move:
Most construction workers in India are itinerant and are constantly on the move so as to find available work, the children traveling with them have little or no chance of joining the mainstream of formal schooling. To this urban nomadism must be added the fact that most of these families come to city from impoverished regions with the hope of improving their living conditions. Many of them, especially children, do not speak the local language and therefore cannot integrate in local public schools. Giving these children baseline academic and linguistic competence from an early age while working on sensitizing parents about the importance of Education increases their chances of joining the formal education system (through residential schools by mobile school transfer). Without the groundwork provided by the Day Care Centers, these children may never have access to schools and never regard Education as a way out of their limiting lifestyle.
The migrant child is forced to drop out of school as they accompany their impoverished parents out of the villages and into nearby cities in search of work. Such children are relegated to living in unhygienic, unsafe and non-child-friendly environments, often at the brick kiln/construction sites where the parents work. The migrant child is sucked into the vortex of hard labour as they try and support their parents out of the poverty, thereby losing their childhood and all opportunities of education and a future. They are denied government protection, social security, medical and nutritional support, and citizen’s rights in the process of endless mobility and transition from one region to another. Children of migrant laborers are completely invisible in this vicious process and they in particular miss out on education.
Through our projects, covering migrant children, we seek to create a sustainable and enabling environment to ensure that these groups of children get access to schooling. We provides quality education opportunities to these children at risk of becoming working children. Our initiatives provide an avenue through which children who have dropped out of school or have never been to school, can bridge the gap between age level and learning using a curriculum designed specifically to ease their transition into the formal education system.
New Vision provides educational services to children of migrant construction laborers and works toward achieving systemic changes that result in sustainable improvements in the access and quality of services available to these marginalized migrant families. An elaborately designed integrated program that focuses on Holistic Development, health and life skill competencies, learning through a non-formal developmentally appropriate, fun filled, categorically divided into three aspects.
A. Special Attention to address needs of different age groups:
- Creche : For the under 3 years
- Balwadi : Preschool for 3-6 years
- Bridge Course : For 6 years and above & Support for school going children
B. SAFE & NURTURING ENVIRONMENT
- Education: Play Way Child Centered, Age Appropriate Needs, Mainstreaming , Tutorial Support
- Health & Nutrition : Combating Malnutrition, Growth Monitoring, Immunization
- Capacity Building & IR : PTMs & Personal Interactions, Awareness of Builders & Contractors, Executing Various Models of DCC in the Process
C. Outcome of Our Intervention:
- Health & Nutrition : Protection to children
- No Sibling Care
- Nutrition Improvement
- Age Appropriate Immunization
- Learning Levels – impact on gross Motor Developments & Confidence levels
- Collaboration with Govt. Health Services
Educational & Child development centres are set up on the construction site itself, in rooms allotted by the builder at the labour camps. Centres run programmes that focus on comprehensive development that include education, health and nutrition components.
New Vision Creches day care concept is a simple intervention strategy that if made mandatory on all construction sites would go a long way towards ensuring that these children are safe, healthy and educated.