Basic Education for All
Foundation for Environment and Sanitation (FES) undertook a comprehensive education programme known as “Basic education for all” to provide functional Pre-primary, Primary, Higher Secondary, Adult literacy and skills Training to its group members in urban and rural areas for poor.
FES‘s mandate is to improve opportunities for young children, street and working children aged zero to eighteen years living in circumstances of social, economic, and cultural and environment disadvantage. Children who are denied from their dignity, rights and equal opportunities from all spheres of life, their families and community they live in. This implies access of health care, education, social and economic justice, a sustainable natural environment and opportunities for self reliant of a child and his family as a whole.
FES is concerned with young children’s overall development and therefore promotes and implements a holistic approach including education, health, nutrition and economic sustainability:
- Believes that the growth and development of a child depends upon his parents and therefore actively highlights empowerment of parents especially mother’s capacity to support them, to support their children.
- Gives high priority to participating approach, involvement of community in all process of development and decision-making, therefore actively promoted the need based programmes, which are initiated by the community for development.
- Also believes in creating people’s institution and local strength for sustainable development and therefore provides encouragement and skill training for building up local organizations, leadership capacity of resources and working in solidarity with networking.
Moreover, concentrating on the development of young children and their environment will have a preventing and lasting effect and will generate sustainable benefits.
School Support: In order to achieve the goal, Foundation for Environment and Sanitation undertook to provide basic education, functional adult literacy skills to its group members and rendered educational facilities to their children through formal and non-formal primary schools run by Foundation for Environment and Sanitation since the year ….. and today 15000 children of age group 4 to 18 years are enrolled through our education project support.
Total 12 academic years of education are imparted to the children. Academic session of the school began in beginning of each year. They are taught basic numeric, literacy, along with arithmetic, history, geography, environment, science, social studies, hand work and extra curriculum. They learn songs, dance, mimes, sports, drawing, etc. to upgrade the physical and mental strength to integrate in the main stream. After the standard of Class-VIII, they are encouraged to attend technical education for skill development. Campaign against early child marriage has influenced parents and the girls to continue their study until they become adult or become physically and mentally mature.
Child Protection Activities: FES is running a child protection center at Sitapur (near Lucknow) for boys and girls. 500 children of age between 4-18 years are staying in the center. They are all from the family of most vulnerable situation of the urban areas. Most of the children are living in these centers who are come from difficult circumstances, sexually harassed, abused, children from sex workers either without or single parents. These children are provided with basic education up to the standard Class-X and followed with technical knowledge to learn about different livelihood trade so that when they are 18 years old and go out of the centers they can start small enterprise on their own to become self-sustainable.
Exposure and social activities: FES organizes “child to child programme”, under which cleanliness of city roads, village roads, canals, ponds, village school, even to clean their own homes are important activities. Plantation of trees on the roadside, canal side and in their own field is part of the environment education. About safe drinking water, use of compost manures, use of toilet, basic knowledge of hygiene and general knowledge of epidemics are given to the children through the school year so that they learn about the basic daily practical life.
In order to improve their physical and mental growth and cultural environment, FES organizes cultural festival, annual sports, educational tour, drawing, essay and debate competition throughout the year amongst the children.
Children’s Festival: FES every year organizes children’s cultural festival. In each school for two days cultural festival are organized prior to the main festival. Around 3000 children participated in the massive gathering to perform their talents on art and sports activities. They lived together to share with their fellow friends and create public opinion” to be concern for the children”.
For broader awareness and campaign among the children and the public, FES organizes rallies, seminars, and workshops and publishes documents on the issue of children’s problems and their rights. Campaign to abolish child labour and protection of the children against all forms of child abuses are remain the main concern for the organization.
Kite Festival: Like each year FES raises awareness against child labour, child trafficking, child abuse and fights for the rights of the children so that the civil society becomes aware and makes some steps towards the development of the children. On 17th September 1000 children gathered at the Maidan (Ground) opposite to Victoria Memorial of Meerut city to express solidarity with each other. Children from different parts of nearby slums, street and the villages come together to express their rights to enjoy, play, study and be in the mainstream like other children. Most of these children were from the difficult circumstances. Many of them are working in the restaurant, factory, and houses, packaging industry and even making kites, which they never have the opportunity to fly.
Education Tour: Children and teachers together are exposed to do village survey, visit to natural forest, hills, seaside, town or big city, development centers, industry etc. to gain broader knowledge about the society. As part of educational tour, such tours are organized several times in the year.
Technical Training: Teachers are brought in the month of May, June & July to undergo teachers training for seven days each in order to share the experiences and learned new techniques to improve education methods so that the quality education is imparted.
Youth Camps are held where youths come in groups in the workshop to share their teenage problems and how to improve their skills and knowledge about social activities. Adolescent problem and the need for higher education combined with technical education were also discussed. Young children and adults are provided with skill training on various trades so that they can be independent to start on their own enterprise to combat poverty and be self-sustainable.