Ensuring Access to Education.
The urban slums in Karachi do not have access to social services ad resources. Most of the population works on daily wages in the informal economy. The meagre income that they earn for survival is not enough to send their children to schools. As a result of this, slum areas have staggering population of out of school children. These kids either help parents or get involved in illicit activities. HISWO with the support of its team of volunteers mobilized the local communities and also organized awareness sessions. Through participatory approach, HISWO consulted the community to identify the root cause of the problem and its solution. The stakeholders from the community showed reluctance to send their children to school due to poor economic conditions of the family. The prevalent notion that came out of this consultation was that the parents considered time “currency” and preferred their kids to earn spending extra time on labor than schools. The return of investment in education was equal to none as compared to participation in an economic activity. HISWO identified local schools in these slums that were running with minimal resources.
Quaid Foundation School is one of the schools that struggle to retain enrollment ratio of both girls and boys. The school has very congested space with only 2 rooms. HISWO is has provided school desks and chairs for the students. The children who left school or those who never attended school were identified with the support of head of the school and HISWO’s staff.
HISWO has enrolled 55 students as of year 2019. Half of them are girls who helped their mothers with household chores. HISWO is now focusing on retaining the enrollment so that these children complete their primary education. We need more spaces and fund to continue supporting more children in these areas and HISWO is coordinating with corporate sector and government officials to push this cause. We see gap in terms of lack of access to social services and government’s attitude to provide these areas with proper infrastructure. HISWO looks forward to carry out active advocacy on multiple levels and also intends to create channels to upgrade the skill set of the youth of these areas