Kaliyuva Mane takes baby steps towards inclusive growth

With a view to ensure the welfare and development of children, inclusive welfare and inclusive development have become key words for a few organisations.

M R Ananth Kumar of Divya Deepa Charitable Trust, said Children’s Day would be meaningful only when we can educate and empower all ‘opportunity deprived children’.

“Children are born with varied abilities and their abilities are influenced by several external factors. One should not put all children on the same scale. Our Kaliyuva Mane is a free ‘Out of System’ institution, based on the philosophy of ‘School for Children’ rather than ‘Children for School’. There is no ‘last date for admission’ and there is no grading of classes. Children can join the school at any point of time learn anything and everything, based on their grasping abilities and interest. Once they are ready to face SSLC exams, they appear for it,” he said.

“So far, since 2005, 54 of our children have appeared for SSLC and 52 of them have passed, most of them with first class marks. Just a few days back, a single-parent boy joined us. He has studied up to seventh standard in English medium, in a conventional school. He was working in a tea stall in Mysuru as he could not cope with studies in the school. He is now over 13 years. All India Institute for Speech and Hearing’s evaluation equated him with a first standard student. The children who come to us are from varied backgrounds and with differing abilities. We have children from reputed schools also,” said Ananth Kumar. “At present, we have a total of 87 children. Among them, 61 boys and 11 girls are hostelites . The rest are day-scholars from nearby places. Recently, due to an initiative by a student of SDM IMD, funds were raised on Milaap, a crowd-funding platform, for renovation of the existing dormitory and for construction of an additional dormitory on the first floor of the existing dormitory. Besides, various organisations have donated various items for the welfare of the children. Lalith Mohan Shah, once my partner, supported me initially, identifying my interest,” he said.

“Kaliyuva Mane, is a child-centric alternative school. Our eco-friendly residential school ensures adequate love, care and empathy to each child to create a happy childhood. We innovate educational models to suit the educational and emotional needs of the children. Due to lack of learning environment in school and home, a turbulent childhood and ignorance towards the child’s varied emotions, abilities, and interests, many children are deprived of an opportunity to learn. Rural underprivileged children, child labourers and school dropouts, dyslexic children, and children who are unable to adjust to regular schools, come to us,” said Ananth Kumar.

He said there is a need for many such institutions across the nation as there are many students who can be grouped as ‘opportunity deprived children’. Celebration of Children’s Day would be meaningful when all such children get suitable education, he added.

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Kaliyuva Mane takes baby steps towards inclusive growth

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