Child Development

Our child development program has been divided into five sub segments, namely:

  • Pre-school program
  • English teaching project
  • Street kids teaching project
  • Orphanage volunteer work
  • Aanganwadi Capacity Building Project (Integrated Child Development)

Pre-School Program
A pre-school education is important because it teaches children basic skills, allows them to interact with other children, andstimulates their minds. It is crucial to begin a child’s education at a young age because it allows the child to develop the skills that are necessary for him or her to contribute to society. An essential part of this education begins at the age of two, when a child’s mind is very impressionable. However, many children in rural areas do not have the opportunity to receive a pre-school education because of various community problems. Many children do not have the time to go to school because they have to help their families. For example, children in rural communities sometimes find it necessary to work in order to earn money. Also, discrimination often forces young girls to stay at home and help their mothers take care of their younger siblings. Another problem facing rural communities is that the parents of many children are busy working in order to earn money. As a result, either the children must accompany their mothers to work, or they are supervised by neighbors or older relatives. These issues pose a hurdle in the children’s ability to attend a pre-school and obtain a proper education. Through this program, the volunteers engage with local communities to create an environment wherein the children learn social skills and manners and participate in various activities that unleash their curiosity and creativity.

English Teaching Project
India has a huge scarcity of teachers especially at the primary level in rural areas. Governmentand the private sector alone cannot fill the gap. That is where volunteers like you come into picture. Through this project, the volunteers teach English to school going kids so as to create a foundation for these kids to participate in the economy when they grow up. Volunteers cover the current English syllabus of school kids. In addition, they also impart education on English alphabets, counting, days of weeks, months of year and manners/etiquettes.  Volunteers also help to build the English writing skills of the children by encouraging them to write on a variety of simple topics.

Street Kids Teaching Project
This project is aimed at kids from extremely poor financial backgrounds, including kids of labor immigrants. These kids are totally illiterate and lack the most basic amenities of life. They typically have 4-6 siblings and their poor parents cannot afford to take proper care of them. Thus, these kids roam around in the streets in search of food/work and therefore they are called street children. Volunteers teach basic English & mathematics, color & shapes, dressing manners, animal and sounds recognition, manners and hygiene. The volunteers also engage these kids in art activities, such as drawing, painting, sketching, singing and dancing. Most importantly, volunteers try to give these kids an environment of warmth and joy.

Orphanage Volunteer Work
All children are creation of God and deserve similar love, affection and proper care as our own children do. Therefore we take the help of international volunteers to build the capacity of local orphanages. Some of the activities a volunteer can engage in include:

  • Helping kids with bathing and dressing
  • Helping in feeding the children – especially the babies and mentally challenged
  • Nursing and caring for the children
  • Organizing and facilitating games, plays and musical shows for the children
  • Educating the children about personal and environmental hygiene
  • Helping the orphanage staff in carrying out their administrative tasks

Aanganwadi Capacity Building Project (Integrated Child Development)
In India, childcare in rural and under developed areas is administered through a program called "Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS)". ICDS is India's primary social welfare scheme to tackle malnutrition and health problems in children below 6 years of age and their mothers. Services provided under this scheme include:

Supplementary Nutrition

Nutrition and Health Education

Immunization

Health Check-up

Referral Services

Informal Pre-School Education

The main beneficiaries of the ICDS scheme are aimed to be the girl child up to her adolescence, all children below 6 years of age and pregnant and lactating mothers. Gender promotion of the girl child by trying to bring her at par with the male child is a key component of the scheme.

ICDS scheme is implemented via Anganwadis ("courtyard shelter" in Hindi). Anganwadi is a government sponsored child-care and mother-care center in India. It caters to children in the 0-6 age group. (www.aanganwadi.org). Anganwadi may be thought of as a Day Care Center involved in a more holistic child care. As a volunteer you may assist the Anganwadis by:

  • Ensuring attendance of the children placed in the center
  • Teaching alphabets, number counting, colors, shapes, animals, sounds
  • Teaching kids how to get dressed and manners
  • Engaging with children in art related activities (drawing, painting, singing, dancing)
  • Creating a fun, colorful, “playful” environment for the children through games, stories and other creative activities
  • Developing the physical health of the children through activities/games that utilize their bodies
  • Imparting contraceptive counseling and nutrition education to mothers