Bringing optimism and change through care and education.
India is home to over 1.3 billion people, consisting one-fifth of the world’s population. Of those 1.3 billion, over 287 million are illiterate, making up nearly 40% of the world’s uneducated population. These statistics place India as the number one country in the world for the highest rate of illiterate adults.
Government Education is free in India. The question is, Why are the statistics so high?
Poverty is India’s enemy to the holistic development of the nation.
Approximately 35% of India’s population live in slums, which results in generations of families raising children in crude environments that are barely suitable for human life. Life in the slums equates to no social security, no compensation for injuries and limited access to drinking water and sanitation facilities. Basic needs are scarcely met. Therefore, health and education become secondary to survival.
Conditions like these don’t provide the luxury of options. In many cases, both parents must work, so the elder children stay home to care for the younger. Children grow up fending for themselves and are unaware of life outside the slums.
Government education may be free but circumstances make it unavailable. Therefore, the cycle of poverty continues to progress.
At Jeevan Asha, we’re here to interrupt the trajectory of cyclic poverty. We understand that education is key to breaking individuals out of this lifestyle and so our mission is to target and improve child and adult literacy rates in these communities.
Hope Learning Centre
Our Hope Learning Centre as the name suggests, brings hope and transformation through care and education. This project reaches nearly 50,000 children living in five disadvantaged sociology-economical areas in Thane. Education is our mission but holistic development is our heart. Classes are taught in safe, secure, clean environments where our goal for mental, emotional and physical well-being is prioritized over a child’s academic performance. Our educators intentionally teach using play-way methods to ensure positive learning environments which enhance the chances of students developing a love for learning. Fresh, nutritious meals are provided every day because we focus on and value our students’ holistic development.
The National Institute of Open Schooling is a government board that enables individuals complete their tenth or twelfth grades through Distance Learning. This is a super opportunity for many residing in low socio-economical areas, as they consistently face compounded challenges many others will never have to experience, leading to a high rate of school dropouts.
Jeevan Asha began this project in 2017 with a collective goal to improve the futures of low-income families, promote education and break cycles of poverty, providing a route to a second chance at life.
When one is illiterate, there is a compulsory dependency on others. And when that someone is taught to read, write, do basic math and use a computer, a whole new world opens up before them. And this massive difference provides opportunities to escape poverty, reduce healthcare costs, find sustainable jobs and ultimately, change their life.
Enter Jeevan Asha, which commenced their Adult Literacy Program in 1999 with eight women meeting in a small apartment.
Gaining literacy skills skyrocketed their self-esteem, motivated participation in decision-making, and added to the women’s overall sense of identity, value and worth.
Many migrant workers - along with their families - settle down in the slum areas and often have a poor quality of life, especially in areas of health, social security and wage structure. Children leave school to work and contribute to the household income, resulting in another uneducated and unskilled generation who have few options for the future.
Jeevan Asha identifies such candidates and serves as a catalyst, bridging the gap between resources and recipients. Many of our recipients are young women and based on their interests, our team liaisons with NGOs that provide skill development programs and work to provide them with employment opportunities, education and skill training.
Jeevan Asha’s Anand Ghars or “Joy Homes” first started in 2011. The ‘Joy Homes’ are fun, interactive gatherings where children aged 4-14 can be themselves while being introduced to good values and sound principles in an atmosphere of security and love. These sessions take place once a week for around 2 hours and are hosted in homes, schools or community halls. Neighbors have commented that children attending our Joy Homes have become polite, disciplined, better able to express themselves, and have grown in team spirit and relationships with others. It is a proud moment to watch our students become agents of change, spreading joy and care through their families and neighborhoods.
“Education without values, as useful as it is, seems rather to make man a more clever devil.” – CS Lewis.
In response to this need, Jeevan Asha started Project Value Education in the year 2016. This course which deals with peer pressure, making right choices, etc. has been successfully implemented in municipal and government aided schools.
Our Goal through this program is to put back values in Education and make the child a better, more compassionate human through the choices he makes.