I have found my passion for kids a few years back, and I have worked and volunteered with them since then. Driven by my love and sincere belief that children are our future, dreaming of a better world would never be complete without investing in children. This belief has also motivated me to work as a teaching assistant at my university for a year now. Recently I have been more interested in underprivileged kids, and I have been looking for an opportunity to make a difference in that field. When I came across Pehchaan The Street School, I immediately felt driven to be a part of this team, and when I read more about them, I became even more motivated by the amount of passion I have seen and how they have so much will to build a better future for the nation.
It is said that investing in children is critical to building a nation’s economic and political future. But what happens when less than half of India’s children between the ages 6 and 14 go to school with at least 35 million children do not attend school? What if over 150 million children are working as bonded laborers? One of the most significant factors holding back India’s progress is its high level of illiteracy. The most recent census reports that overall adult literacy is at 74.04% – 82.14% among males and 65.46% for females.
Dropout rates are increasing alarmingly in classes III to V With 50% for boys and 58% for girls. It is genuinely heartbreaking witnessing all these potentials go to waste. Imagine more than 50% of girls fail to enroll in school, and those who do are likely to drop out by the age of 12. The high cost of private education and the need to work to support their families and little interest in studies are the reasons given by 3 in every four drop-outs as the reason they leave.
Right now, we no longer have the luxury to blame a system or individuals. It is time to step up and do something about this! Believing that inside every child is a rainbow waiting to shine, it all becomes too overwhelming to have an opportunity to leave such a positive impact in someone’s life. Just imagine the possibilities of what we can do together!
By Clara Younan