In Jodhpur, a city of 1 million people, where the literacy rate is 67%, there are thousands of children living in poor circumstances who are illiterate. Families on a meagre income do not always consider education for their children as a priority, particularly for their daughters, whom they hope to marry at a young age as they will then live with their in-laws.
The Scholarship Programme at Sambhali Trust has been running since 2007 and provides scholarships to enable children to attend a good school. At present Sambhali has 180 children in this programme. Sambhali has many children already attending its empowerment centres and would like as many of these children as possible to be able to attend school and receive a full-time education.
Enabling these children to go to school will make sure they are literate and have the education they need to be able to achieve their potential and the ability to find employment in the future. Children from poor communities gain respect, confidence and self-esteem and are able to disregard the discrimination they feel belonging to a low caste; they also learn gender equality from a young age. Without an education, these children would remain illiterate.