“Pratigya” is committed to Quality School Education for children and runs an innovative project - Education Voucher. Under this Project, children from disadvantaged section get a Voucher with which they can study in a school of their choice. If the child or parent is unsatisfied, they can change the school. Here money follows the child, not the school.

Presently this project is being run by Pratigya in two districts of Jharkhand – Ranchi (urban) and Khunti (rural) covering over 130 students from socially-economically backward families. 80 students from three urban slums, namely Jagannathpur, Ranchi are studying in different private schools with education voucher worth Rs.5,100 (upto) per annum. Similarly 50 students from a village called Chandapara in Lodhma, Karra Block, Khunti District have received Education Voucher and are studying in different schools of their choice.

Initially in the year 2007-08, Vouchers were given to 40 deprived children (mainly tribal), for studying in better school, from Jagannathpur and the number of children benefitted under this programme has reached to over 500 in the recent years. Pratigya intends to include over 1000 children under this project in next 3 years and act as a Policy Demonstrator for sustainable model of Quality School Education on Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode.

The project is Jharkhand’s first privately funded program that provides financial assistance to parents for sending their children to schools of their choice. An education voucher is a special scholarship given to needy children whose parents are free to redeem it in any school of their choice. School management becomes accountable to parents who are free to seek better quality schools.

Scholarships are awarded to the students from Class I through V, after which it can be extended till standard 10th, provided they meet the requirements of the project. The scholarship covers the annual fees of the school, up to a maximum of Rs.5100/-. In certain circumstances the books are also provided by Pratigya, to extremely poor and needy students, subject to the availability of funds.

Pratigya Education Voucher given to the supported children

 

Our achievements in last 12 years:

  • Over 150 students from slums in Ranchi, Jharkhand and a village in Khunti, Jharkhand are studying in better schools through using the Education Vouchers.
  • Over 70 children have passed their matriculation exams successfully in the last 4-5 years and are continuing their higher studies as well. These were those children who were either dropped out from some school or would not have continued their education if Pratigya hadn’t intervened into their lives.
  • About 15% of the students supported by Pratigya, are among the rank holders in their classes who in all probabilities would have been drop outs. The school administration who used to neglect our sponsored kids in their classes, now appraised them for their leadership skills. Our sponsored children lead the school activities and won prizes for their respective schools.
  • Some of our students dissatisfied with their schools have changed their schools in past 3-4 years, which shows the power of choice that Education Voucher provides to them.
  • More than 25 students have passed the Class XII exams and are on the verge of getting graduated.
  • Parents in the community now talk about the benefits of Quality of Education and demand for Right to Choose School for their children.
  • We have started giving Education Voucher to 40 students in 2008 and the number grew more than Four fold in recent years

 

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CHILD RIGHTS AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS

 

Introducing Child Rights corner & SDGs in Atal Tinkering Labs

 

 

Pratigya, as a facilitating organisation for UNICEF & Commutiny, introduced Child Rights corner and Sustainable Development Goals in the Atal Tinkering Labs, established by Niti Aayog in the schools of Ranchi. Children of S S Doranda Girls High School were told about the SDGs and Child Rights and what activities can they do in this Child Rights Corner.

Laxmi...A Super Girl

Laxmi belongs to a socio-economically marginalized tribal and migrant family, coming from an extremely backward rural remote region of Jharkhand. Laxmi displayed her entrepreneurship skill in the one day State-level Business Fair called “Baadi-Utsav”, organized by Pratigya in Ranchi, with help of its strong and committed volunteer base. She, along with two other children of her slum, got into a business alliance. They installed two business stalls. One was a food stall. The other was stationary related. And they successfully implemented this, especially the food item was a great success, and they made good profits.
Laxmi's family, over the years, has put up their stalls in the yearly Jagannathpur Mela. Till 2014, Laxmi’s family used to sell “Hadia” in the Mela. In the year 2015, Laxmi opposed this traditional practice of their family which has been going on for over several years. So, in the year 2015, Laxmi's family, on the advise and convincing of Laxmi, installed a food stall in the mela. Laxmi has also started a small hotel which she is running from her home only. Even after much opposition in her studies at home, she has passed her 12th exam this year, getting constant support and encouragement from Pratigya. After her due involvement in the activities at the first centre of Pratigya in Jagannathpur, she took the initiative to convince Pratigya to open a new center nearby her area as she felt the need for it due to the increased cases of substance abuse among small children. Also, she took all the efforts at mobilizing the whole community. Recognising the potential of Laxmi and her leadership and management skills, Pratigya first enrolled her as a Peer Leader in her community, and as and when she completed the age of 18, she has also became a Pratigya staff too. Right now she along with her graduation classes-gives time to manage Pratigya's activities, as and when she has time after her studies.

Laxmi hasn't stop putting her creative ideas in empowering the girls and women in her community. Last year she proposed a Football tournament of mothers in their traditional dresses like saree, salwar, etc. Nobody was ready to accept this idea, even the mothers for whom she had thought of this beautiful idea.  But Pratigya team encouraged her to try this idea. In the first phase she failed to convince any single mother for this tournament. Then she took the help of the children of Pratigya, mobilized them, and visited every single house in the locality trying to convice them about the same. Finally, the team of children and Laxmi succeeded in extracting 4 teams from urban slum Jagannathpur in Ranchi and a rural village Chandapara in Khunti. The tournament started and the way these team of mothers played the tournament was remarkable. At first the males opposed it stating that their wives cannot play the match, they must be in their homes. But these women didn't stop, they played the matches and they make these men believe in their spirit of sports.

This idea of Laxmi and the empowerment of women in her community let her won an award from Kailash Satyarthi Children's Foundation. She was the youngest female among the 16 women who were awarded for their achievements. The name of the award is "Mahila evam Bal Adhikaar Sanrakshan Samman". Her story has also been published by Butterflies, New Delhi.

 

Robin Baxla...A Tribal Village Boy

Robin was the first “Child Volunteer Manager” of the first rural centre of Pratigya. He be-longs to a farming tribal community at the margins and resource deprived as well. He was in Class 9th when joined Pratigya in February 2015.
Pratigya's life skills programme brought about a lot of visible changes in Robin. After joining the Pratigya centre, Robin became active, sincere and focused. Previously, he used to roam around the village aimlessly, with other deviant characters of the locality.
Pratigya helped him realize his true potential as a leader. He became the mentor of younger children at the centre; with him being more sensitive on the issues concerning the children of his age. He, over a period of time, built the learning environment at the centre, and also guided the other chil-dren accordingly.
Robin is in his second year of Graduation in Commerce stream. After running the children's bank at Pratigya centre, Robin became more attracted towards the issues surrounding finance and economy; and thus he selected commerce as his vocational subject; as he now has a career in mind, and wants to join a bank and become a manager! His dream is, to continue to help and guide the children, as Pratigya did with him, as he mentions quite often, emotionally.
Pratigya's programme has not only impacted the life of him but his mother as well. The habit of saving (as there is no formal banking system nearby in the village area) has really empowered the financially illiterate tribal community here. Robin's mother has now be-come more vocal in the meetings (Monthly Parents' Meeting, Gram Sabha, Women's Group Meeting held from time to time) as well at home; and has taken command of the budget of her household. Through her son Robin, he has learned to manage money better and inculcated the habit of savings.

 

Lily Sneha Lakra...A Tribal Village Girl

Lily belongs to a farming family of an extremism affected 'Block' of Khunti district in Jharkhand. Being one of the eldest 'child' of her village community and family, she took the responsibility of guiding children younger to her, after she joined Pratigya in February 2015. She became a mentor for the children at Pratigya's Srijan Bachpan (SB) centre at Chandapara village.
Pratigya's SB Programme was introduced in her village Chandapara in February 2015. She passed her 10th exam in that year 2014 but had discontinued her studies. She was a drop-out. After associating with Pratigya's SB centre, she got involved in a lot of activities at the centre. She even took the initiative in calling different resource persons and even Doctors, ANMs, etc. to the centre to take different sessions on health and life skills for children.
She worked as a Health Educator and showed a lot of pro-activeness. She interacted a lot with Village Level Health Worker (VLHW). She used to raise important matter in the GBM (General Body Meeting) of the children held regularly at Pratigya cen-tre. For example, once she raised the matter of less participation of boys at the centre, especially in the GBM.
After becoming a part of Pratigya's programme, she got reconnected with educa-tion and joined in the 11th class in a college in 2015. After passing her 12th exams, she has joined as a volunteer guest teacher at the school set up by Pratigya in the same village. Also, she has closed her savings account at one of Pratigya’s programme, and has consequently opened a bank account, with the guidance of the organization, after she turned 18.

 

Madhu Minz...A Tribal Child Representative in Gram Sabha

Madhu's father is a farmer by profession and mother, a home-maker, who has never been a part of any formal schooling system. Her family‟s financial condition remains not so good. She is a first generation learner!
As Madhu puts it, associating with Pratigya's health awareness programme has been like a “life-changer” for her. At one time, she was very casual about her outlook , i.e. She used to go to school without taking bath. Also, she didn‟t have much information regarding health in general either.
Being a part of Pratigya's health programme, brought a remarkable change in her. She is now the “Little Doctor” of the community, going door-to-door creating health awareness. Also, encouraging and teaching other children about the importance of maintaining basic hygiene. She is now serving the term as a Child Health Educator (CHE). She also led the “Cleanliness Drive” in her village as a CHE, and was quoted in a lead Hindi daily news-paper (Dainik Bhaskar) of Jharkhand.
Madhu is the first child representative in the Gram Sabha of Chandapara Village, vociferously advocating the issues of children„s health at the local governance level – a leader of, not tomorrow, but today only!

 

Saraswati Oraon...An emerging football player

Saraswati Oraon belongs to one of the most marginalized tribal community who was forced to migrate to city in search of livelihood. Her parents are daily wage labourers. She says, “mere papa pehle mujhse kaha karte the ki kahi jaake kaam karo, padhne-likhne se kuch nahi hone waala”.
Saraswati‟s father studied till 12th whereas her mother didn‟t know how to read and write. But it was her mother who never lost hope in Saraswati go-ing to school for formal education.
In year 2010, Saraswati got connected with Pratigya and was started getting a sponsorship for her educational expenses. She got connected with the life-skills sessions of the organization where she learned to commensurate with her personality. Improving Saraswati‟s education environment not only in-cluded better teaching methodology at school but also involved providing her with better study facilities outside of it. Saraswati didn‟t have the apt study environment at home or nearby. She had issues with the loud bicker-ing noises in their neighborhood as well as constant trouble with electricity which badly affected their studies. Pratigya‟s centre provided that space for her.