Samar and Aarti Go To School

Samar and Aarti Go To School

Thirty-eight year old Anita lives in Jari Village in Lohardaga District with her family that includes two children—7-year-old son Samar and 5-year-old daughter Aarti. Anita and her husband used to work at the brick kilns to sustain the family.

The children were not able to continue their studies when schools shut during the second wave. Anita and her husband did not have enough money to get the children private tuitions. They stopped studies and spent all their time playing.

But things changed once Oxfam India started Mohalla Classes in the village. Discussions were held with the Mahila Samiti in the village to ensure that all children, especially those of the most marginalised communities, attend the Mohalla Classes. Samar and Aarti joined these classes too along with 20 other children in the village.

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The children enjoy coming to the Mohalla Classes. Parents are happy, that their children are now able to go to school.“There are so many families who work as labourers and cannot afford to give private tuitions. These Mohalla classes are a blessing,” says Anita.

The children have now also started going to regular schools but they do not miss Mohalla Classes that are run after school hours. With this additional help, the students are able to perform better in schools as well despite the disruption they have had to suffer due to the lockdown and shut schools.     

We run 51 Mohalla Classes in 7 districts of Uttar Pradesh and Jharkhand—Raebareli, Pratapgarh, Fatehpur, Meerut, Muzaffarnagar, Gumla and Lohardaga—and have 1166 children attending them. In Lohardaga, we are running 4 Mohalla Classes where 75 children are attending these Classes.

As of May end, we enrolled 1081 out of school children in 7 districts in Uttar Pradesh and Jharkhand. First with the sustained efforts of the Mohalla Classes and later with a dogged enrolment drive in 7 districts, these children now have a shot at a better future.

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