Founded in 2003, Khoj School has successfully turned ten villages from 6 to 25% of rate of literacy to 100% literacy in the district of Sheikhupura in Pakistan. The villages are a hub of criminals without the most basic services. The girls in these villages are the first generation going to school. A number of girls have earned post graduate degrees. The School has an innovative approach that focuses on action led logical thinking and creativity to promote tolerance, peace and gender equity.
The communities around Khoj School are steeped in blood and women and girls are affected most adversely. Yesterday, a man was killed to take revenge for a previous killing. Sixteen children of the killer's clan were immediately affected as they were instantly removed from the school in order to run away into hiding. Imagine, the trauma the children go through and the kind of persons they develop into.
Khoj School focuses on dialogue based, action led, relevant and integrative education informed of the daily life of the learners. They are engaged in constructive activities like community service, organic school garden for safe food and environment, hand making of items like clocks and clay pots. This education is already yielding positive results. A good percentage of school graduates, more so with girls, have gone for higher education and have chosen a path away from their criminal elders.
The long term impact of the school will be a hub of crime, revenge and killings turned into a hub of peace and tolerance. The next generation of girls and boys will have positive thinking, equal opportunities, enabling environment especially for girls to actualize their potential as human beings. But we still need to go a long way to bring about wide spread change.