An opportunity for poor children in India

  • 2011

Not all children are guaranteed the right to education in India. Because there are not enough places for the entire child population, any child must pass a test in order to attend public school. This test complicates access to training for the sons and daughters of poor families. But the young Spanish NGO Naya Nagar wants the humble also to have their chance.

Naya Nagar was born in January of 2009, when its founder and current director, Ar nzazu Mart nez, who had been living in India for 6 months and volunteering at a local NGO, He decided that the best way to help the country was through an organized and serious structure, Marta Cerce o, head of communication for the organization, explains to Positive News n.

Currently, the NGO has one employee and two permanent volunteers in Spain, and a team of about 12 volunteers for specific topics. In India, Martinez has a team of four permanent volunteers. To this staff is added that of the two local partners of Naya Nagar in India. These are the organizations Mera Parivar and Don Bosco, with which Naya Nagar develops its two main projects.

One of these projects is developed with the community of Rajeev Nagar, one of the most impoverished in the Indian town of Gurgaon. There is the Mera Parivar educational center, where children between 3 and 12 years old learn to read and write in English and Hindi, with the aim of passing the admission exams n in schools in the area and become part of the educational system of the country. We currently have 168 students, more than 24 who come in the afternoon to tutor, and who are former students of the center to whom we have granted scholarships in private schools in the area, says Cerce o.

In addition to the school, the Gurgaon project is completed with the Mera Parivar training center, whose purpose is that women from humble families, belonging to the lower castes, can access the labor market. For this they are trained in courses such as sewing, design, computer science, hairdressing and aesthetics, home cleaning and cooking. The center currently welcomes 53 students.

The second project of Naya Nagar, carried out in this case through the local NGO Don Bosco, is the city of children and is developed in the area of ​​the brick factories of Passor, in Jhajjar, a city in the Haryana region. There, health care and education are offered to families living in shanty towns around factories, without access to services of any kind or sanitation. The Passor school currently has 150 students.

"In both schools (Mera Parivar and The City of Children) students are given a daily breakfast or lunch and are given basic health control, with semiannual medical check-ups and medical assistance if necessary, " says Cerceño.

The communication manager adds that “India is not a poor country, but of tremendous inequalities. There are numerous services and rights, but due to overpopulation and that a few are not interested in knowing each other, our beneficiaries do not know or enjoy them. Therefore, Naya Nagar, in addition to working in education and training, devotes a good part of her work to informing her beneficiaries about their rights and how to access them, so that they can improve their lives autonomously and do not always depend on help external ”.

Naya Nagar is an open organization, in which it is possible to participate as a partner or volunteer staff, or by publicizing the work of the NGO. Another possibility is to help financially through a donation of the amount you wish to contribute.


Image: School children thanks to Mera Parivar. Courtesy of Naya Nagar

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