This Daan Utsav Empower Migrant Sugarcane Workers’ Children with the Gift of Reading
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Know more about us
Who we are
Jidnyasa Initiatives was founded by Ms. Deepali Chougule with a passionate commitment to uplift marginalised children. Every year, during the sugarcane harvesting season (typically between October and November), countless farmers and their families migrate from neighbouring districts and states to work in the region. This migration often lasts for about six months. During this period, the children of these families are left without proper care, and their education is disrupted due to the need to move away from their homes and schools.
Furthermore, these children face unsanitary living conditions, which present significant health risks. They are also exposed to various dangers, including the risk of sexual harassment, leading to early marriages within their communities. In some instances, these children may even be drawn into criminal activities. Additionally, adolescent girls and women confront severe challenges during menstruation. The lack of proper menstrual hygiene forces them to resort to unclean and damp cloth instead of sanitary pads, elevating the risk of infections. Our mission is to reintegrate these children into the educational system and provide them with a safe and nurturing environment.
Our work and its impact
For decades, an estimated 12 to 15 lakh individuals have migrated within Maharashtra for sugarcane cutting. They journey from drought-stricken Marathwada to the sugar belt regions of Sangli, Kolhapur, Pune, Satara, Solapur, and Ahmednagar. The labourers working in these areas often reside in makeshift accommodations on open grounds adjacent to factories. They are provided with basic materials like bamboo and tarpaulin sheets for shelter. However, essential amenities such as electricity, schools, toilets, and even water are not readily available.
How we will utilise these books
We have initiated a program specifically tailored for the children of these migrant workers. In rural Western Maharashtra, these labourers, along with their children, move between their homes and workplaces, which include sugarcane fields, brick kilns, mines, stone quarries, and construction sites. Many of these children are deprived of formal education, proper sanitation, and a conducive learning environment. Our program aims to offer early childhood education through the establishment of learning centres, Bal Bhavans, mobile vans, and by providing nutritional support. The outcomes are expected increased the interest in learning activity, improves parents’ participation in children’s education, safe and healthy childhood.
The books we receive will play a pivotal role in our learning centres, helping to keep these children engaged and interested in education. We will provide them with storybooks, conduct reading sessions, and introduce them to a variety of library books.