We are an NGO of young people working in the area of Schools and Primary Education in Maharashtra, India. We have been working to provide quality education to the Underprivileged children in the schools and empower them.

Although India is amongst the ten fastest growing economies in the world, it still has a third of the world’s illiterates. According to global education report of 2004, India’s ranking was 106 out of 127 countries in the education sphere. With 34 percent of the illiterate population in the world, India has the largest number of illiterates by far – with second-placed China at 11 per cent. Sixty years after independence, with 40 percent of its population under 18 – India is now confronting the perils of its failure to educate its citizens, notably the poor.

There are many reasons for the failure. First of all, there is an acute shortage of teachers. Children often don’t get a support from their parents. Parents seem to be indifferent to their child’s learning and only see them as additional hands for work. There is also longstanding neglect, insufficient public financing and accountability, and a lack of motivation among some teachers to pay special attention to poor children from lower castes. Even basic amenities like water and electricity are not being provided.

There is a need for urgency. Education levels need to be improved. India with the second largest population in the world cannot develop with such a bad indicator. Furthermore, illiteracy leads to other problems such as poverty and unemployment.

Education and learning contribute not just to livelihood and marketable skill but also nurture the sensibilities needed for human well-being and flourishing. Equally importantly, education helps build the capabilities that promote just and equitable social and political arrangements.

Aims of Education 

  • JUSTICE, social, economic and political.
  • LIBERTY of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship.
  • EQUALITY of status and of opportunity
  • FRATERNITY assuring the dignity of the individual and the unity and integrity of the Nation.

The landscape of education in India 

The policies and philosophy of the Indian education system have been deeply informed by Constitutional values, and are laudable in all respects, the results on the ground have been mixed. This is not entirely surprising given the vast, complex and diverse canvas covered by the Indian education system.

 A few facts may serve to illustrate this point:

Scale: 

  • To further the goals enshrined in the Constitution of India.
  • To recognize that education is for all. It is fundamental to our complete development – material and spiritual.
  • To refine sensitivities and perceptions that contribute to national cohesion.
  • To develop scientific temper and independence of mind.
  • To develop manpower for different purposes of economy.

Education as a Fundamental Right:

Children are legally entitled to free and compulsory elementary education under The Right to Education Act, 2009 (RTE)

  • 7 million education functionaries, including about 5.5 million teachers.
  • 1.43 million schools and 199 million children enrolled; 8.1 million children out of school. (2011-12 data from DISE 2012-13 state report card)
  • Access: 99% of the rural population now has a primary school within 1 km
  • Universal Education: Literacy is only 74.04% (Male –82.14%, Female – 65.46%) (census 2011).
  • Retention: Only 39% children reach 10th grade; of these only 40% pass out.

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Medlife Foundation volunteers are self-motivated people of all ages and from different walks of life who give of their time and resources to make positive difference in the lives of children.

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