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Education on Wheels: Bus turns into school for slum children
There are a number of slum children in Delhi, who are eager to lay their hands on books and acquire basic education. But, their financial and other prevailing situations are such that it is impossible for these children to go and study in schools. But what if the school is brought at their doorstep? This is exactly what an NGO in Delhi, Deepalaya has been doing in the past 6-7 years, under an education program known as 'Education on Wheels'.

Under this program of Education on Wheels, it is the teachers, who travel in the bus and go to various locations in West Delhi to impart education to these slum children. In fact, on a daily basis, the bus moves to four different slum locations. “Inside the bus, there are computers, books etc. Music is also played, so as to attract the children,” said Shah Nawaz, Senior Manager of Deepalaya.

This bus is different from the ones in which we travel on a daily basis, which basically comprises of two seats on both sides. The interior of the bus includes a huge carpet, which is laid on the floor of the bus, where around 30-40 students can sit and study. For these underprivileged slum children, the bus acts as their classroom as well as their school.

It is through this program, 'Education on Wheels', that slum children receive education in an attractive manner – not a normal day-to- day school with chairs and benches. “This project is a package to attract the slum children and help them stream back into schools.” said Shah Nawaz.

This education program, which initially started 6-7 years ago is a special and an unique initiative, where education is imparted to such kids inside a bus. It is basically children between the age group of 6-14 years, who attend these classes. A number of children attending the unique education program are drop outs, or someone, who do not attend their school regularly.

The buses, which ply to various slum areas in West Delhi have been a successful one with children turning up in good numbers as well. But, there are several problems as well, which the teachers have to face, as some children attend classes for not more than 2-3 days. They deal with the situation instantly. “It is not an easy job to motivate the slum children. The teachers also go for their home visit in the slums and ask the child parents as to why did their children not turn up for the classes,” said Nawaz.

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