SAKSHAR (a call for change)

SAKSHAR is the Social responsibility/Literacy project initiative taken up by the students of J M International School

"Desh KO samman do, Subko akshar gyan do"

JMIANS take up a cause for the enlightenment through literacy………


Education and literacy are the keys to a good future, yet much of our population remains illiterate. Everyone, however young, has a social responsibility to help eradicate illiteracy

Why is literacy so important for India? Literacy, simply put, is the ability to read and write. On some days, when you have a lot of homework or have to study for some test, you may wish you never had to go to school. But you are lucky indeed to be able to get the gift of learning. It's basically the ability to read and write that enables you get a good education. This not only assures you of a good portfolio but also gives you the tools which help broaden your mind.You get exposed to the ocean of knowledge which opens several avenues and enriches the quality of life. In fact, learning is not a part of life, learning is the life itself.

India has a huge population of over a billion and unfortunately a massive section cannot even read or write. 

"What does this all have to do with me? I can read and write," you might say. In such a large country, the Government alone cannot shoulder the responsibility of eradicating illiteracy. Everyone, however young, has a social responsibility to help.

You ask "How?" Take, for example, your maid. You can offer to teach her if she is illiterate. Quite often they feel embarrassed to learn from adults but are receptive to learning from children. You could check if she has children who do not go school.

Maybe a part of your pocket money (and if you could convince them, that of your friends too) will help pay for books and supplies.

What happens if these children do not go to school? Often, children, as young as nine years, have to work in various trades. Lack of education is the main cause of their plight. Next time you are at a traffic light and a young boy comes out to wipe your windshield for a tip, try to stop and talk him into going to school.

If you take one hour of your day, each day, you might be able to make a difference in somebody's life. Our slogan should be, "Each one, teach one & make everyone SAKSHAR!"

PROJECT SAKSHAR was born at JMIS with the thought – SAB PADHEN, SAB BADHEN" (Let everyone read and write, let everyone grow in life). 
SAKSHAR is an initiative of JMIS students that sensitizes privileged children of the existing disparities in the social order and motivates them to contribute their individual might towards the cause of the less privileged. It also makes them understand the value of Education in one’s life.

Under this project, children teach the helping staff and their children at school and at their home. They passionately involved themselves, not only in preparing the learning material, teaching aids, worksheets and carrying out the training processes but they also shared their views with their counterparts and participated in several activities with them. The Literacy Drive commenced as a holiday assignment for the students who readily took initiative for the noble cause. Before the beginning of vacations students and teachers were divided into groups and they thoughtfully planned the learning program. The moments were ecstatic for the parents who were overwhelmed to see their little ones helping elders to hold pencil. In order to keep the attention of their elder-pupils, the students narrated adventurous stories and had interesting reflective sessions. 

Inspired by the confidence, response of persons taught and appreciation by one and all, students wanted to take it forward and this time they chose to teach helping staff members. When enquired for the reason of such decision, the students replied that ‘aunty (Ms Shoba) kehti hai ki wo apne bete ka letter nahi padh sakti’.They approached and inspired them to learn. Some of them even narrated the story, part of their course book, of Kong Cecilia, a grown up lady who learnt to read and write through her grandchildren and NLM (National Literacy Mission). The concern shown encouraged them to drop hesitation and take the road to mission literacy. 

During teaching sessions one of the helping staff members, Ms Ranjana, revealed her desire to sign rather than affixing her thumb impression. She shared that she couldn’t withdraw her own money from bank as she didn’t know how to sign. Students took special care of her and employed more sessions wherein audio-visual modules were shown to facilitate learning. In between motivational stories of women who have gained heights at national level were told and discussed. Rewards like toffees, chocolates, flowers, pencils and hugs motivated them to carry on.

Sugar is sweet but sweat is sweeter with desired result. It was heartening to see the school ‘aunty’ reading letter of her son’and another one signing with confidence and amplified self esteem than giving thumb impression. Avni Jain of class III delightfully said, I loved teaching Seema Didi how to read. I shared my books and gave her a hug every time she answered right”.Similarly Pratyax Karnpal of class VII proudly admitted to be the part of such valuable project, “A, B, C, D and 1, 2, 3 are the lessons we get to learn at a very young age. But it is shocking to see that there are some people who even at the age of 30 or more can’t even recognize the alphabets. Pratyax further added, “I had the chance to teach such people the basic alphabets which was quite pleasing. My parents are very happy to see me getting responsible”.

At the end of each learning workshop, everyone rendered together our SAKSHAR SONG – “Aao mil kar padhe padhaye, saksharta ka deep jalaye, sakshar laya nai umang, Naya savera ujle rang.Nirakshar koi na rahe, sab log padhe, sab sath badhe. SAB PADHE SAB BADHE 

It was certainly a proud moment for the educators to witness their children grow from ME to WE.

It has indeed been a proud moment for the parents and teachers to witness the live example of compassion and empathy. The bond developed as the result of Literacy Drive has changed the outlook of all the participants, be it teachers, students, parents, helping staff at home and at school.

And once they started realizing the worth of the privileges they are born with and the value of education, they automatically turned their thoughts towards positivity and develop the right outlook. This would eventually help them develop into not only responsible but successful personalities in life. In addition they grow up to become who individual who contribute positively to the society. “KNOWLEDGE INTO ACTION TO TRANSFORM THE SOCIETY” – that is what JMIS-SHIKSHANTARAM is all about.

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