Having completed M.A and GSET in Economics, Nitin Saindane came to Surat to pursue his career. He worked for a private school and also decided to devote two hours for the slum dwellers because of his association with NSS for two years during college time. Initially, he gave some basic social etiquettes and hygiene-related lessons to the children. Gradually, he was supported by other teachers as well. They divided the teaching into these categories: basic living style, letter knowledge, basic Maths, and good behavior.
This gave way to the establishment of the Bhararee Foundation, under the aegis of which Muskan School for the slum children was formally founded. Mr. Mutkal Srinivasan is the advisor, while Meghana Patel, Mahendra Khangar, and Dipak Patil manage other activities. Children at Mukaan School are given full material and stationery supplies along with meaningful toys, throughout the year. This school acts as a bridge between the privileged children and the marginalized where the former take care of the needs of the latter on occasions like birthdays. “Our primary objective is to reduce the distance and difference between the rich and the poor,” says Nitin, the founder.
(Courtesy: Muskaan School)
Volunteers worked on strict timetables and accordingly the subjects were taught. Besides, they reached out to their parents as well on encountering bigger issues like child exploitation, abuse, family problems, drug business, economic problems, and the child’s tendency towards cheating or looting. Mr. Nitin collaborated and cooperated with the local Police also to normalize the situation and give these children a better life.
Their recent focus has been skill-building, doing creative workshops, and disturbing the grains and immunity booster drinks during the lockdown. Teachers volunteered to teach the children with the limited resources they could manage during the lockdown and assign appropriate homework. Their stories were aired in local newspapers for selfless services. Presently, 103 members are serving approximately 546 slum children through this organization and 14 teachers work with Muskan School without any remuneration. All of these children have been sent to mainstream schools through RTE.
Story By: Haridas Patil