We take this opputunity to thanks ALL or donors for their support
The funding support to Arushi Children Home for Girls has enabled provisions of critical services for girls rescued from streets and difficult circumstances. Arushi being one of the first girls’ children home initiated by Salaam Baalak Trust strives to provide a multifarious package of services for holistic development of girls. Apart from education, health and nutrition, computer
literacy and skill development form an essential part of services package at Arushi. With the help of the supported project girls at Arushi have been able to access education, skill development and other extracurricular services including exposure visits and excursions. The sustained provision of these classes has enabled overall growth and development of girls. Along with their intellectual development, girls’ personalities are also improving. They are becoming
more confident and capable of making informed choices.
A progress overview of the services being supported under the project has been presented in the
Education: Education is one of the most important components of service package provided at Arushi. Education is instrumental for academic development and character building of students.
Since Arushi caters to girls from different socioeconomic background with often little of no exposure to schools. To meet the multifarious needs of education of girls, Arushi team provides education through formal, non-formal and open schooling. Formal schooling involves enrolling children in schools and linking them to mainstream education. In the reporting period, 31 girls have been provided formal schooling. They are studying in different schools including, Rotary Public School, ST. Crispin Senior Secondary School, Kitty Garden Public School and Universal Public School and Arsha Public School. These children are supported at Arushi Home through in-house classes conducted by SBT teachers. During these classes, school going children complete their school homework and assignments and also revise their school syllabi for exam preparation.
Non-formal education (NFE): NFE classes are aimed at children who have either not been to school or are drop outs. Since, these children cannot be enrolled into a formal school immediately, they are provided NFE to prepare them for school education. Thus, NFE becomes the first step towards mainstreaming a child into the society. During the reporting period, 43 girls
were provided NFE. Use of various activities and teaching aids made the NFE classes joyous and impactful. In the reporting period one girl made successful transition from non-formal to formal schooling.
Open schooling is offered to those girls who are not inclined towards regular school education and express a strong desire for pursuing vocational and skill development course. Five girls are studying through National Institute of Open Schooling (NIOS) and are preparing for their exams.
Vocational training and job placement: Girls at the threshold of adulthood are prepared and counselled for career development. Once they turn 16, they are linked to skill development and vocational training courses. The process of preparing girls for vocational training begins at the age of 15. The girls along with the career counsellor conduct a realistic career assessment based on their skills, interest and aptitude and then discuss the vocational training avenues available to them. During the reporting period, three girls have been enrolled into computer classes. They have completed their course successfully. One girl is learning theatre, two girls are doing gym training and one girl doing receptionist training.
Rehabilitation: In the reporting period, four girls turning 18 were rehabilitated. The rehabilitation process involves preparing girls for an independent life outside the children’s home. The preparation involves psychological and career counselling sessions with girls. The team also searches for a safe accommodation for girls to stay on their own. Of the four girls who have been
rehabilitated have been enrolled for higher studies, one girl has secured a job as a beautician and one girl is working in the hospitality sector. The Arushi team is in regular touch with girls for consistent follow up.
Annual excursion: In the year 2019, the annual tour was organised at Nainital – one of the popular hill stations in the State of Uttarakhand. A total of 31 girls were taken for the excursion. It was an entertaining and enriching experience for the girls. The tour was scheduled for four days. It offered an opportunity for children and staff to interact and become friendlier with each other. During the excursion girls visited famous sight-seeing spots in Nainital including the
picturesque Saat Taal – A pristine lake. The girls stayed in a cottage amidst the mountains, the cottage exuded the serenity of nature. The children and Arushi team relaxed at the cottage and played indoor games such as kho-kho and badminton. The girls then went to another beautiful lake called Nal Damayanti Lake. They were excited and enthusiastic to catch the fish in the lake.
Those who could swim enjoyed swimming under the supervision of staff members. It was as if girls had developed an immediate liking to the lakes in Nainital. They were elated at the idea of visiting another majestic and famous tourist attraction called Naukuchia Taal. Here they enjoyed
boating along with the team members.
Exposed to the scenic beauty of Uttarakhand, the girls then visited a zoo along with the younger children.
The girls bonded well and learnt to adjust with each other. This inculcated a
feeling of collectiveness and sharing and caring among them. Many team building exercises were done to strengthen their rapport with each other and staff members.
Challenges and opportunities: The Arushi team grapples with funding crunch for linking girls to various life skill and latent talent development activities. To address this challenge, the team is mobilising individual donations and also looking out for affordable options to link girls to various hobby and other courses. The team also faces difficulties in providing specialised care to children with disabilities. These children need lot of care and affection as well as time. The staff is multi-tasking and building capacities to meet the complex and multifarious needs.