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Inspired by the Nationwide call of Mahatma Gandhi March towards Village, Peoples Institute of Rural Development – PIRD was established in the year 1983. PIRD is working for landless labour, poor farmers, child labour & women groups related to rural development programmes. Campaign against child labour and education for child labour are also our major programmes.
We always compare children with flowers and butterflies because of their common virtues like innocence, ever present freshness and tension free lifestyle. We do not differentiate between children and butterflies as far as their playfulness is concerned. We also consider our children as future pillars of our Nation. But the reality is stark opposite and very pathetic which will disturb any good hearted human of our society.
Presently, about 11 crores children of age group 9 to 14 , are working as child labours. This makes 10% of our total population. All these children have missed out pleasant moments of their childhood and ultimately they will remain away from the mainstream of social development. If we as a society ignore these facts and neglect this situation, it may prove to be harmful to all of us.
For the last 8 years, PIRD is taking various innovative steps for prevention and eradication of child labour. The organisation has arranged different programmes like non-formal education, Bridge course camp, Campaign for educational awareness, educational centre at village level and overall social awareness, etc. for child labours. Though this approach has not proved to be very successful, it has definitely made at least a partial impact on the overall campaign. After visualizing the gravity of the problem, it becomes absolutely necessary for everyone to participate for the cause of total eradication of child labour. We are aware that the success of the programme depends on every ones active participation. The main cause of the child labour is economical, though level of education and social backwardness are also important factors. If we try to solve these problems, the rate of child labour will reduce by 50 percent. With this confidence, for the last three years we are conducting the programmes of educational awareness for eradication of child labour.
Problems faced by parents, social backwardness, illiteracy and dislike for schooling, etc. lead children to become dropouts and consequently to take up child labour activities. In our country out of 11 crores child labours, almost 90% child labours work in agricultural field in rural areas. Child labour is preferred because it is easily available for work at low wages. But due to this practice children do not get an opportunity to become knowledgeable which subsequently misleads them in their future. Moreover, they do not get adequate chance to enjoy childhood and tension free life.
The school is the most suitable place for a child. School education is a basic right of every child. It is impossible to have non-formal education and short term schools as remedial measures for child labour. Therefore, the organisation is ready to implement the measures which will lead to 100% enrollment in Primary schools and avoid school dropouts. The organisation aims at inculcating interest in children to attend school, to provide educational aids through educational centres to needy and deserving children, to create congenial atmosphere for learning and to make the existing child labour literate and to guide them in learning which will enable them to appear for examinations of std. IV and VII.
This programme is being implemented in 50 villages of Latur, Parbhani, Osmanabad and Nanded districts of Marathwada division.
To eradicate child labour which is an integral part of Educational Awareness Programme, we plan to conduct sports, competitions, street plays, entertainment programmes, etc. which will create an interest in children for schooling. The overall nature of this campaign will be to contact and subsequently actively involve parents, social groups of women, volunteers, members of the education committee from rural areas, teachers, at the village level. In addition to this, to run learning centres at the village level, to provide educational kits to needy children, to inspect the educational committee in rural areas, to organize training programmes for volunteers and other organizations, etc. will be undertaken.
Education is an effective medium to bring about social reforms in a person and in the society. Illiteracy leads to exploitation. Due to ignorance one has to face injustice, harassment and related problems in the life. Hence, if one has to keep away from all these evils , the only effective way is to educate oneself. The ultimate success of personal development, family development and National development depends on education only. To date, our history reveals that the more a society is educated , the more is its development and prosperity. Hence, to eradicate present and future child labour , we insist that all the children should get equal opportunity of compulsory and free education.
The real strength of Educational Awareness Programme, will be a helping hand from our society. A minimum of Rs.15000/- is necessary to run an educational centre at village level or expenses of Rs.300/- per child. You may send your financial help to one or more educational centres or bear the expenses of one or more students. Similarly, you may donate your used one but useful books of Std. I to VII, partially used notebooks and other educational aids for this programme. Your generous contribution to this programme would prove very beneficial to bring about educational awareness in the life of needy students. You may send your donations in cash or in kind to Peoples Institute of Rural Development, Ahmadpur. To make this programme a success, we earnestly appeal to you all, for valuable contribution towards this noble cause.
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