The root cause of major problems is inadequate education. The schools in villages face the major issue of decreasing number of students. It happens because of numerous causes. The school atmosphere is dull, schools do not have proper education material, the practicality needed to survive in the real world is somewhere missing from the curriculum and most importantly the overall attitude towards education is depressing.
Bhagirath addressed these issues through an education program. We started with school atmosphere. We wanted to create healthy and inspiring school atmosphere. We encouraged teachers and students to come out of the school and make efforts to create the beautiful school. We aided schools financially to paint. Bhagirath team guided them to plant trees, flowering plants, vegetables. The experts training were also arranged for this. Bhagirath also encouraged schools to install biogas units for government’s healthy meal program. As of now 10 schools have installed biogas and the everyday healthy meal is prepared through biogas. Schools also faced water issues. Bhagirath provided them with water tanks. As of now 27 schools have installed water tanks.
We also provided schools with extracurricular activity equipment such as sports equipment, music instruments. Because we believe along with curriculum the hidden talents of the students also need to be explored and exposed to proper channels. Bhagirath also conducted sports, music, drawing competitions in the schools.
Students facing financial problems need to be given support. With the help of district bank, we facilitate education loan to students who want to pursue higher education. As of now, we have provided loans to about 75 students for higher education. Also about 1000 students have received educational material through a joint venture with Seva Sahayog, Mumbai and Pune. Through another joint venture with Savali Charitable Trust, Mumbai we have opened a school for Katkari community, a tribal community majorly deprived of education. For some student, everyday school involved travel in ST bus and hence regular attendance was a problem. So we provided them with a season ticket.
With respect to travel, we conducted a unique project. We provided a bicycle to girl students. Many of girl students in spite wanting to come to school would not attend it just because its a long walk to the school from their homes. Although providing bicycle did not just sort travel issues. It addressed issues related to women empowerment also. Save Girl Child is the notion of the nation today. But if we do not empower girl child then this is a major problem. By providing a bicycle to the girl we think we addressed this issue to some extent. We have experienced a tremendous increase in confidence of the girl who started riding a bicycle to the school daily. That’s just a first step towards empowering the girl child.