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Education

In the Hushe Valley the problem of poor education, which in many cases is non-existent, permeates and hinders all areas of ordinary life in the community.

The level of adult illiteracy, especially amongst women, is over 80%. Children’s access to education is around 50%. The problem of education access for girls is particularly acute. Traditionally they are not accustomed to schooling.munawar-niños

In addition, there are no vocational courses for older children which might facilitate access to the labour market. Children often leave school after learning only the basics of a trade. The result is a lack of interest leading to subsequent dropout.

Regular schools are small and do not have the necessary infrastructure to provide quality education. The professional teachers are not qualified and their teaching methods are ineffective. The teachers do not have adequate educational materials or buildings with adequate facilities.

The work that the Felix Foundation has been conducting in the field of education since 2001, aims to strengthen education in the community of the Hushe Valley and to improve its quality, accessibility and equity.

 

The Project Sharbi Nima (Balti Sunrise)

Nima Sharbi has an educational strategy with an approach based on local leadership, gender equality and community development, which is endogenous, inclusive and sustainable. This is a long term project, designed and divided into several stages, that seeks to create a high quality education system of reference in the area.

Background

Felix Baltistan began this project as a promotion of a local initiative to improve the education of children. In 1998 a group of mothers, fathers and teachers from the villages of Saling and Machulo, seeing that the quality was poor in the schools, decided to create a new school for their children. The name of the new school was ‘The Munawar School’, and it was intended to improve the quality of teaching, ensuring a teacher for every classroom and effective teaching in English.munawar-chica

However, the Munawar School only taught up to grade 5 students and the parents then had problems to send their children to study in other schools, because they were again not happy with the level of education given in the Government schools of Machulo. Nor did they want to send their daughters to study in other towns outside the home.

To continue their studies at Secondary school or High school, the students had to travel 20 km and many families could not afford school fees, travel costs or lodging.

With the support of the Felix Baltistan Foundation the Sharbi Nima Project has managed to extend education to grade 10 in the town of Machulo. For those who want to continue to study advanced courses outside the valley, the Foundation granted scholarships. transporteMunawar School’s enrolment in the last 4 years has achieved parity in the numbers of girls and boys and even achieved an increased demand for the schooling of girls, which is now spreading to other schools in the valley.

The Nima Sharbi Project enters a second phase from 2010 with the beginning of the construction of a new school and the introduction of a new educational model that will revolutionise the educational situation of the people of the valley.

The new model which Sharbi Nima proposes is an affordable one which is sustainable, has quality and is based on the standard of self-organisation and participation, founded on the following principles:

• Local leadership for endogenous development.

• Planning and continuous improvement.

• Targeted at the entire population of the Hushe Valley - primarily girls and school-age children - with a duration of two years.

• Training throughout life.

• Cooperation with other organizations (Administration, PDCN) and Training (empowerment of local associates).

• Equal opportunities and gender size.

• Complementary to other initiatives in the valley run by the Pakistani Government, other institutions and NGOs.

• Focus on those groups which are particularly sensitive to situations of discrimination.

• Sustainability for the future. To do this we are developing a strategy to involve the Government of Ghanche and Gilgit-Baltistan in financing most of the costs. The Government has already shown signs of cooperation with the provisional assignment of a building for the Munawar School and the transfer of land to build a new school.