Access and Retention
Access to, and retention in formal mainstream education is a core focus of our Education and Protection programme. Even with the introduction of the Right to Free and Compulsory Education Act (2009), many children in our target communities are still not in school. Through our Rehabilitation of Deprived Children through Education programme, we provide children who are not in school or have previously dropped out of school with informal education through preparatory centres. The target is to mainstream students to formal schools within one year. Once mainstreamed, students'
receive backup support through coaching centres to ensure that they are retained within the formal education system.
Our model primary school, Kishalay Sishu Siksha Niketan (KSSN) promotes quality education in rural areas. The school adopts best practices with regard to quality education, including small student to teacher ratios, comprehensive curriculum, extracurricular activities, and transport. The school also acts as a learning environment, where teachers from nearby schools can come and learn modern teaching methodologies. In addition to KSSN, we have also recently established a Primary
Teacher Training Institute (PTTI) in Nandakumarpur, ensuring that there is adequate supply of well-trained teachers in the Sundarbans.
Children are India's most precious resource and as a result, it is vitally important that they protected. Through our Childline project, we provide free emergency and outreach services to children in distress through a 24-hour toll free phone number (1098). We operate in 3 schools (1 residential, 2 non-residential) for victims of child labour under the National Child Labour Project (NCLP), providing informal education with a view to mainstreaming them to formal Government schools. To complement our child protection initiatives,
we run awareness programmes in the community to increase awareness of child protection issues and the services available.
Our youth empowerment activities are focussed on empowering children on their rights and the issues they face on daily basis. By giving them the necessary skills and knowledge, they can be enact change and become tomorrow's leaders. Through Child-Core Groups, students undertake community based projects,
developing their own skills and generating awareness in the community on social issues.
Engaging the community on education and protection issues is a core focus of the programme. Through Centre Development Committees and Mother Core-Groups, engagement and capacity of
local stakeholders are built to ensure the long-term sustainability of activities.