Our Story

Our offering is to provide high-quality holistic education to enable community transformation

A registered Trust, ektara began its journey in 2011 with a small group of children and women from impoverished families in the slums of Topsia and Tiljala.

Starting with just 20 odd beneficiaries, Ektara now has 630 children attending classes, given school uniform, and a daily nutritious meal and 50 women in the Vocational Training programme. There is a nominal fee of Rs. 100 per quarter to give parents’ a feel of responsibility

 

The organization has a dedicated staff of 72, many of whom have been recruited from within the community after honing existing skills and training. It follows the Government’s Child Protection Policy, and programme focus is primarily girls and women although younger brothers of students are often inducted (since girls take care of siblings at home). It is a 6 day functional unit, Monday to Saturday, starting 10.00 am till 5.30 pm.

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Our Community

Most of our beneficiaries are migrants from the neighbouring state of Bihar who settled here for better job prospects when the tanneries were fully functional. However, the government crackdown on tanneries operating within city limits, and with most getting relocated outside the Green Belt, resulted in mass unemployment and poverty. Today, these workers earn a paltry living as either daily wage labourers or by working as cheap labour in make-shift leather shoe sole units.
The cycle of poverty and lack of education has prohibited this community from any development and it is our aim to at least make sure that future generations can break out of it. Our children are all First Generation learners, which makes the challenge bigger.

Most families consist of 6-7 members with one earning member with an average income of Rs.3500-Rs.4000 per month. Under these circumstances they are barely able to look after their basic needs of food and shelter.

Why did we start

The children living in urban slums face barriers to accessing and remaining in school that are accentuated by very low family incomes, poor infrastructure and high population density. In order to help augment the family’s income, children in urban slums often dropout of school to work as manual laborers.

The children living in the slums with their parents face a number of problems, they are:

  • Poor quality teaching in Government school
  • Poor quality of teaching in private NGO schools
  • No access of after school education to compliment the school education
  • Poor quality teaching by private tutor
  • Lack of study space for the children
  • High cost of private schooling
  • Lack of awareness amongst the parents about the education of their children
  • Lack of opportunities for drop-out school kids
  • Lack of sensitivity to the emotional needs of these children.

To address the above problems in the urban slum, primarily “Darapara” at Tiljala , EkTara focus on imparting quality education to the slum children so that they feel proud to be a part of mainstream and hold their head high in the society.