Khushi, a 7th standard girl from Delhi. Her father works in a building construction company. Due to sudden stall in construction work, her father is jobless now and it has become difficult for them to manage survival in such adverse circumstances. "My father will leave no stone unturned to make sure my education continues even when he does not have the ways and means to earn right now. I just fear that he will end up putting more burden on himself just ensure that I can study for my board examinations next year. I don't know where he will get the money from," she says.
Entire world is fighting with an enemy which, at this point, seems undefeatable. Corona Virus pandemic has forced governments to take unprecedented steps. In India, we are currently in the middle of a 40 days long complete lockdown. And it might push around 400 million people in the country back to poverty.
In states like Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, and West Bengal, which contribute to a large migrant worker population spread across the country, this problem is multi-fold. Millions of them are daily wagers who in the absence of opportunities to earn are struggling to survive and arrange for food for themselves.
In the struggle for survival, the education of children coming from these underprivileged families will definitely suffer in the year ahead due to an acute shortage of money to fund their school expenses.
Another student, Aman, from Uttar Pradesh's Sultanpur is not sure if he will be able to carry forward with his school because his father, a farm labourer, is not left with any work and the family is now scraping together money just to be able to survive. )
(Just like Khushi, there are many other students who are standing at the crossroads today because of the lockdown.
12-year-old Zehra, a student of Ayub Girls School Patna is worried that she will be asked to withdraw her admission from the school because her father, who worked as a construction worker in Delhi, is now unemployed. According to Zehra, her family has always been against her attending the school and in case of crises, she will be asked to help with the household work. As the incomes of such families dry up, it is the girls who will be the first victims of it. This means that thousands of young girls are today at the brink of losing their only chance of creating a better future for themselves.
Youth Dreamers Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation which has been working since 2015 to provide government scholarships to underprivileged children in Bihar and Maharashtra. The organisation is also launching its own scholarship scheme in Bihar from next session. We are currently working with hundreds of students across the state of Bihar and we can see the magnitude of the problem on the ground.
Our appeal is for everyone to come forward and support these children; save their education and future. On average, a government school student in India has to spend Rs 5,000 annually on their fee and other requirements. Similarly, a student studying in a private school has to incur expenses ranging from Rs 5,000 to 15,000 annually. By donating a small amount, you can ensure that one student will stay in school for the next one year.
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