Save a conflict affected tribal child from dropping out of school during Covid-19 crisis
With the lockdown and covid-19 situation a lot of emphasis is being given to integration of technology and ed-tech as a potential replacement for classrooms and schools. While it seems to be the way to go in the long run in plain areas, the situation and infrastructure in remote geographies will make it difficult in nearby future. Sukma, alone has only 10% penetration when it comes to effective use of technology to deliver key services
Additionally, there is a growing concern that with the lockdown, families along with children may return to the naxalite areas, turning their back on several years of rebuilding and peacebuilding efforts. In this context, Shiksharth’s role has intensified, and we are pivoting to provide educational material to parents at home, to convince them to stay back - for their children and their education.
And while the world contemplates on technology, we at Shiksharth are designing ‘Learning Kits’ to deliver education at doorsteps for children in Sukma. And a lot of support is required for the same. The solutions being designed will solve multiple issues:
· Immediate access to education and learning in offline mode.
· Help us in creating multi-lingual based contextualised content that will help these children once schools re-open as the pressure on education delivery will be higher.
· Instead of re-inventing the wheel, re-use existing content and practices after simple customization/contextualisation.
Shiksharth is resorting to printing learning kits and ensure delivery of contextualised learning content in form of worksheets, games in offline mode in the remotest geographies in form of Learning Kits. The focus being on remedial education and mastery over key concepts .
- Keeping the community and parents engaged in learning journey of their children
- Ensuring retainment of out of school children in re-opened schools in Sukma to engage with over 4000 children who had recently joined back formal education system after 10+ years of dropouts and out of school.
- Minimise dropouts because of the covid–19 situations once schools re-open
- Learning Kits distributed to 10,000 children i.e. > 5000 households
- The key measurable impact will be number of children accessed through learning kit and number of children joining schools back once the academic session begins.
Work done so far:
1. Kits distributed in June: 3000+ children
2. Collaboration: 2 NGOs, Sukma district administration and talk with 2 district ( Bastar in Chhattisgarh and Gadchiroli – a naxal affected tribal district in Maharashtra ) in progress
3. Potential reach after collaboration: 20000 children
4. Total volunteers: 20
5. 5000+ children reached by end of June
ABOUT SUKMA and Shiksharth
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.
In Sukma alone because of the conflict:
1. schools at 36 locations were destroyed
2. basic education services got affected for 50000+
3. Over 300 school are completely/partially
inaccessible for the 50000 children in Sukma alone
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.
Bhumi through Project Shiksharth will be supporting and addressing
the problem of access to quality education and improving the education status
for naxal affected tribal children who are either enrolled in government
schools but lack quality education or children who are out of school because of
the naxal conflict.
Shiksharth is a not-for-profit initiative set up in the Sukma, Chhattisgarh since 2015, working towards improving the quality of education in rural and tribal areas through action-based research, design and implementation of contextualised education solution. Sukma is affected by conflict arising out of left wing extremism (commonly known as naxal violence) and hence the focus of the organisation is entirely on conflict affected tribal children. Due to naxal - state violence, some schools in this region were shut for over 13 years. Shiksharth believes in a community led model of education and is currently working on ways by which community, its wisdom, culture and customs can be contextually incorporated in classrooms content and pedagogy. Our vision: “Every child deserves an education and a childhood beyond all ideological clashes”.
Project Shiksharth is undertaken with the 3 approaches:
a) Creating safe spaces for children
b) Develop contextual education solutions
c) Collaborate with government