Amar Jyoti

Development & Education Project: The [candle] flame that never extinguishes

This project revolves around the organization whose main purpose is to provide education and health care to underprivileged children. The school also provides vocational education to help them become self-sustainable when they grow up. The school raises some income by making the newspaper & jute bags which have been developed for them by SETU as a part of fostering self-sustainability, but they need more help.

Half of the children they work with have some kind of disability (hearing impaired, sight problems, missing limbs, mentally challenged, neurological disorder, and so on). The other half come from very poor families. This creates an integrated environment where the physically impaired children can interact with the “normal” children, and where all of them can have a positive education environment. The organization has their own clinic that helps the children with disabilities. They also take care of special surgeries, and even have a workshop that makes the prosthetic limbs that some children use.

The school is constantly in need to buy or upgrade computers, ocular implants, water purifiers, motor-run sewing machines (to teach the physically impaired children how to sew), furniture and building maintenance. However, their biggest need at the moment is money to cover the vocational training. The programs that are available for them to study are: Art & Craft, Textile Design and Jute Bag Making, Computer Applications, Cutting & Tailoring, Electrician. For now, each student needs $150.00 (about Rs 7000) a year to cover for education costs.

SETU not only tries to develop products that these special needs people can create, but also helps them improve product quality, optimize the costs and choose eco-friendly raw materials. In addition, SETU provides them market for their products. They can thus be self-sustainable and live their lives in a dignified manner without being dependent on others.