Street Survivors India
Since 2012 MUNA supports Street Survivors India . Shabnam Ramaswamy, the director of Street Survivors India who visited Alfrink College in 2012, started Jagriti Public School in Katna village, Murshidabad, West Bengal in 2005: a school in rural India where (underprivileged) children have access to quality education in English.
Since most schools in rural India don't offer education in English, children in rural India have less chances in society than children in the big cities. Especially children from poor families have no chance at all. Jagriti Public school offers underprivileged children a change to follow quality education as well. Because the need for quality education in this poor rural district is so high, Sreet Survivors India also started four so-called learning centres in the villages surrounding Katna village. In these learning centres about 1500 children have the opportunity to follow remedial lessons before or after school. Mr. de Haas, MUN director of Alfrink College, visited two learning centres in 2013. The photos on this website were taken by Mr. de Haas on this visit. Charlotte van der Werf, the Secretary General of MUNA 2015, visited Street Survivors in Indian last December.
The children in the learning centres don't have the chance to go to Jagriti Public School during the day, but depend on the poor public school system in India. Shabnam Ramaswamy, the director of Street Survivors India, describes the situation of the public school system in India as extremely bad. For example, Shabnam told the MUNA staff, the public primary school in Katna village has 400 children and only three teachers. The three teachers' primary job is to serve the free school lunch provided by the Indian government, for the rest of the day the school is closed again. This situation in the public school system is very common throughout India, according to Shabnam.
From the 1500 children that attend the learning centres about 25 children achieve a level that give them access to Indian universities and colleges after high school. The families of these children however miss the funds to pay for higher education for their children and this is where MUNA steps in.
We feel that these survivors deserve every chance to follow their dreams. We hope that later in life they can inspire and support other people in their community.
MUNA 2015 raised 1000 euros. The total amount was much higher because Alfrink college supported the same project this year as school. The money we have collected during MUNA 2015 will be used to create a study fund that Street Survivors India will use to support the costs for higher education of children from the learning centres that against all odds got admitted at Indian colleges and universities.
For MUNA 2016 we have picked another Charity project, but we will definitely stay in touch with our friends from Jagriti Public School. In April 2016 a delegation from JPS will visit Alfrink College and in future years we hope to plan a return visit to India.
For now, if you want to learn more about the projects of Street Survivors India, please go to their website and see how you can get involved as well.