This is a joint project with the Anirban Rural Welfare Society. VITAL helps to provide elementary education to over 510 children living in rural areas of Kolkata.
Thanks to a generous donation we have also built a drinking water well and sex-separate toilets, which are used by 16,500+ and 450+ people annually, respectively, from the local communities. The WASH project has made attending school easier for numerous girls, who have gone on to successfully graduate from the project and are studying for undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in History and the Natural Sciences!
What we do
We help to implement this project by working with other NGOs to explicate the benefits of educating children to the parents of the surrounding communities. We target children who are not enrolled in formal schooling, and particularly young girls, to help them escape generational cycles of poverty and protect them from child labour and further exploitation.
This is primarily done by:
Providing educational classes and a place to study, while children wait to be enrolled into government schools
Arranging counselling sessions to help children overcome emotional traumas
Promoting recreational activities which highlight the children's talents
Choosing the project
Despite their being a general rise in literacy in India, studies show literacy levels have decreased in more rural areas. The parents and elders of the community in rural Anirban have not received formal education and most are illiterate, making it impossible for them to provide any formal education to their children, especially when they live in abject poverty. This is why VITAL supports the Anirban school: the school gives children the confidence and education they deserve to best prepare them for formal schooling, while providing the support they require to stay in school and excel even after enrolment!