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Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan

by Zindagi Trust
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
Educating 1800 child workers in Pakistan
12 year old Sara
12 year old Sara

12 year old Sara loves waking up in the morning to the sound of birds chirping and singing, it instills a sort of calm in her before diving into a hectic routine. After morning prayers, she assists her mother in daily tasks such as cleaning the house and washing dishes. All day she waits for her favorite part of the day—going to school! She loves meeting her friends there but above all she loves studying English and Urdu more than anything. “Studying language has enabled me to read newspapers and billboards which I could not have done before. This gives me immense pleasure and when I go to the bazaar (market) I like to read everything I see around me, be it writings on buildings, cars or anywhere else”  she says.

Sara had never attened school before, and had recently relocated to Rawalpindi, one of Pakistan’s major cities, with her family. Her father, a carpenter and the sole earner of the family, was not able to support her education on a meager monthly wage of 130 USD. However, upon learning of Zindagi Trust’s Paid-to-Learn Program from neighbours, her parents instantly admitted all six of their children. This school where Sara is studying specializes in non-formal education, covering basic primary education in an accelerated two-year course. Now, she is in the equivalent of fourth grade and upon graduation will be able to enroll in a secondary school to continue her education.

She’s one of the most active students I’ve come across, who is eager to learn as much she can in the limited time that she has in class”, says Irum, her English teacher at the school. Sara adores reading and is willing to read anything that appears in front of her eyes. She is particularly fond of reading newspapers, especially fiction stories and the news updates section.

Sara’s doting passion for learning makes her friends want to study and learn from her, and this is precisely how Sara spends most of her time with them. They spend hours writing, reading and sometimes even doodling together. In the future, she is looking forward to teaching young children from low income communities who do not have anyone else to teach them. In her words “I learnt from someone and I would love if one day someone learnt from me too”.

Thank you for helping us support confident students like Sara! We urge you to continue donating so that together we can support more students like her, who are eager to learn but whose financial constraints prevents them from realizing their untapped potential.

During a group activity in class
During a group activity in class

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13-year old Zareen’s fingers move slowly with calculated precision as she puts the finishing touches on a wooden doll she has carved herself. The cold steel blade of the scissor glints in the warm morning sunlight as she trims the doll’s hair, which she has glued on moments before. However, these moments, where she has time to indulge in her love of creating, are few and far in between. 5 minutes later, she puts down the scissors and leaves her home for a nearby warehouse where she spends her mornings packaging sports equipment, her fingers now moving mechanically at laser speed to put cricket balls in their nets. Through this job, she earns 20 USD a month, which she contributes towards her household income.

Zareen and her siblings started working 6 years ago in their home city of Lahore when their father suffered a terrible car accident and lost the use of his legs. Their mother, who works as a house help in nearby homes, could not manage alone. Now, her father has re-joined his work as a carpenter in a furniture shop, but funds are low, and Zareen’s small income is a helpful addition to the family’s total monthly income of 105 USD. Sundays are a happy time though, right now her father is helping her carve miniature furniture pieces for a doll house.

Zareen is a student at a Zindagi Trust school in Lahore, Pakistan, This school specializes in non-formal education for working children, covering basic primary education in an accelerated two-year course. Alina had stopped attending school once she started working in the warehouse. However, the Zindagi Trust team reached out to her parents who then enrolled Zareen and her siblings in the program. Now, in the equivalent of fifth grade, she spends three hours at school between her time working at the warehouse.

While she is a consistent top achiever in the subjects of Urdu Language and Mathematics, Zareen enjoys her art classes the most. ‘Playing with colours is what fascinates me the most. Painting is almost like a sport of colours to me’ says the young creator.

Your regular donations aid Zareen and students like her acquire education to fulfil their creative ambitions and passions. We hope you will continue to support young students like Zareen!

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Ali irons a fabric before stitching it
Ali irons a fabric before stitching it

12-year old Ali’s dazzling smile is all the more unique because of his shy personality. His smile naturally peeps out as he recounts his recent task of hemming his first shalwar (traditional trousers), and how he cannot wait to one day graduate to cutting clothes like his Ustaad (master tailor). However, the smile fades as he starts talking about how his weekly income of USD 5 is often insufficient to buy dinner for his 7-member household.

Ali is a student at a Zindagi Trust school in Islamabad, Pakistan, This school specializes in non-formal education for working children, covering basic primary education in an accelerated two year course. Ali’s father heard about the Zindagi Trust Paid-to-Learn program from his neighbor and decided to enroll his son, who had never attended school before. Now, in the equivalent of fifth grade, he spends three hours at school between his job at the shop, to which he goes to in the morning and evening after school.

Ali is a high-achiever in school, scoring first position in his previous academic year. He enjoys school and loves the fact that through this program, he is now able to read newspapers and novels, which he was not able to do before. During the little free time he has on the weekends, he prefers playing cricket with his siblings, and has modeled his batting skills and strategy on Shahid Afridi, his sportsman role model. Although he enjoys scoring sixers as a batsman, his ambition is to study fashion designing and open up his own boutique one day. He hopes to earn enough to support his entire family while working on a craft he loves.

Please donate to provide Ali and children like him the chance at choosing their own future.

Ali participating in his English class
Ali participating in his English class
Ali busy in his craft
Ali busy in his craft

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Finishing up the embroidery
Finishing up the embroidery

Alina’s fingers, holding the long steel needle, flash in and out of the fabric at the speed of light; the gold thread creating a vibrant blur of color. Her station consists of a tall wooden frame, with fabric spread taught over it, much like a blank canvass. An array of shining jewels, glinting mirrors, pearls, and threads lie beside the 13-year old, as she continues her work as a craftsperson, putting embellishments on dresses. Her mother will later sell this hand-worked fabric door-to-door in wealthy residential areas, allowing Alina to earn USD 30 per month, money sorely needed to support her 7 member household. Each dress takes at least 5 hours to complete, leaving Alina just enough time in the day to attend school.

Alina is a student at a Zindagi Trust school in Lahore, Pakistan, This school specializes in non-formal education for working children, covering basic primary education in an accelerated two year course. Alina had stopped attending school after her family moved from a nearby village to Lahore two years ago, due to her family’s inability to afford the fee. Her mother started working as a domestic helper in several houses, where she heard of Zindagi Trust schools, and enrolled Alina. Now, in the equivalent of fourth grade, she spends three hours at school between her time working at home.

While she is a consistent top achiever in the subjects of Urdu Language and Science, Alina enjoys her art classes the most. ‘I enjoy the process of creating something beautiful out of nothing. I want to study Art after I finish school, and become an Arts teacher when I grow up’ says the aspiring artist. Her dedication to teaching is evident by the fact that she tutors her younger brothers in the evenings, two of which work in a car mechanic’s shop as helpers.

Your regular donations aid Alina and students like her acquire an education to realize their professional ambitions. We hope you will continue to support bring young students like Alina!

Participating in Science class
Participating in Science class
Proudly showing her latest Art project
Proudly showing her latest Art project
Recreating a circus scenario
Recreating a circus scenario

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Sher Ali collecting trash at the local market
Sher Ali collecting trash at the local market

Sher means lion in English. Fourteen year old Sher Ali definitely seems to exhibit the bravery which is the defining character trait of his namesake animal. He first showed this bravery when he and his family fled from war-torn Afghanistan when he was seven years old, and came as a refugee into Pakistan. He remained brave when his father’s kidneys were about to fail, and remains brave to this day, as he works as a trash collector and seller in the local mandi (vegetable and fruits market) during the day to support his family.

This bravery is apparent in his smile as he poses for a photograph in front of the leftover vegetable sacks from the day’s batches of produce brought into the market. Sher wakes up at 4 am every morning and comes to the mandi where the day’s produce is being brought into the market, in fiber sacks. These sacks, after being unpacked, are often discarded by the vendors, and are the source of daily income for Sher Ali and many other refugee children like him. After scouring the whole market for these sacks, Sher sells them to a seller for $0.008 apiece. On a lucky day, he will make a daily income of $3. This contributes to his total family income which is made up of the daily earnings of his siblings only, because his father is chronically ill and too weak to work.

Fourteen year old Sher is a student at a Zindagi Trust school in Rawalpindi, Pakistan. This school specializes in non-formal education for working children, covering basic primary education in an accelerated two year course. It was through a door to door recruiting campaign that our Zindagi Trust team in Rawalpindi found Sher at the local vegetable market, and encouraged him to join the program. Now in the equivalent of the second grade, Ali spends three hours at the school every day, after his 10 hour shift at the vegetable market.

Sher is the only one amongst his ten siblings who is attending school. He is an exceptionally bright and quick student, and often scores the highest marks in his English course. ‘I feel so happy when I am in school. Since I started studying, life has become so much easier; I can read street signs and labels in shops’ he tells one of his teachers.

Sher’s bravery again shines through as he speaks about his ambitions in life. “I want to become a doctor, so I may cure all the sick who cannot afford treatment, in my country”

Please continue to support bright and brave students like Sher through our program.

The young doctor during class
The young doctor during class
Participating in his favourite class
Participating in his favourite class
Studying Geography
Studying Geography

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Organization Information

Zindagi Trust

Location: Karachi, Sindh - Pakistan
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @zindagitrust
Project Leader:
Abdul Haque
CEO
Karachi, Pakistan

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