This is a story of children choosing well-being, learning and change-making amidst pain, uncertainty and scarcity. This is a story of teachers becoming change agents and schools containing spaces for this. All packed in one program - Teach to ELICIT, a teaching fellowship modelling disruptive design in schools.
Why Teach to ELICIT?
Last year, a student of my school appealed for a life away from power and pain, at the United Nations conference in Delhi. For Faika, who lives in Pulwama, this was her first step beyond her limits and first word towards the change she will be. And this happened because the teacher was inspired, the student was persistent and the parent was aware, which is why it is one of our success stories. Violence and volatility are what lakhs of our children in Kashmir and perhaps other turbulent spaces in the world experience as normalcy. Conflict is widespread. The trauma it causes is real. Disabling, disconnection and miseducation is rising. And hence, channelising its pain is urgent. I’m Lopa Shah and I founded ELICIT to employ design thinking to make education in Conflict regions relevant and transformative, enabling and restorative. At ELICIT we help children and teachers respond to limitations with resilient action. We navigate through our experiences, churn alternatives and make meaning. Because all that it takes to combat it and all that is rich in the experience of conflict, is learning.
What we seek from you?
Currently, Teach to ELICIT is piloting in South Kashmir. With children at the centre of our Manifesto, and teachers at the heart of the change we hope to create, we seek your partnership. This fellowship will reach 700 students in a year and number of fellows recruited would be 10.
Each hand of support here will ensure that children in Kashmir get closer to what they deserve; that teachers in Kashmir aim for higher personal growth and that our community of change-makers grows stronger and wider.
Funds raised will make a part of the executive costs of the fellowship and shall be used towards recruiting fellows from within and outside of Kashmir. If you wish to sponsor a fellow for a year or a student (one or many) for a year, the costs are as follows:
Per fellow fellowship cost: 2,79,000/- per year
Per-student cost: 8,878/- per year
What is Teach to ELICIT?
Teach to ELICIT is a pioneering initiative to address the pscho-social impacts of conflict on children in Conflict impacted territories. We do this by building a community of educators, who leverage mainstream classroom teaching to create well-being and constructive resilience for children, themselves and the community.
We pride ourselves on our curriculum and the step-wise process we employ to build skills, mindsets, visions.
Most schools in conflict impacted regions are unaware of the density of the impact of conflict on children’s emotional health, or/and have limited expertise to build their practices in response to the realities of conflict. Hence, children face a dearth of a skilled people school systems that can create safe spaces, offer alternate perspectives, and provide resources for resilient growth. And Until systems of education are engaged in dialogues of care and equipped with skills of constructive resilience, regions impacted by conflict may find it difficult to respond efficiently to ongoing volatility.
Our impact in the words of our students:
"Our dreams can come true, if we persist. What I learnt was not just for fun, but these skills can help me think about an alternative career. I feel that I can use my knowledge the way I like. And I want to help other people learn these skills too. That will be my way of contributing to Kashmiri society. Just like we spoke of our suffering through stories, there may be so many people out there who may have stories to be told too. I can do something about those stories too using the skills I learned here. I know that going forward I will be able to paint my emotions and decipher my discomforts.” - Affan Meer, student (name changed for discretion)
“Through out my journey as a facilitator, I would say that i have been a part of change. A change in the mindset of children and who they are. I knew they had changed when they said they wanted to be artists. They were provided with a psychological safe space and I could see them own up to that space. They exceeded everyone’s expectations including their own. It has been quite cathartic for me because I involved my self in the process and it proved to be quite refreshing. Throughout these month I learned how to work with children. It has given me the required skills to work with children from conflict zones. I intend to use this experience of mine to work with other individuals from conflict zones too.” - Amreen Fazli, facilitator (name changed for discretion)
CHILDREN NEED YOU. SUPPORT US.