Shaishav is an organisation working alongside the most marginalised children in the town of Bhavnagar, Gujarat. Most people know education is important, but the pressure to earn is greater and children end up labouring in various occupations in the informal as well as hazardous industries. It has never occurred to these children that they might have choices or the potential to one-day shape society around them.
What we do
Our objective is much broader than just getting child labourers into education. Indeed we recognise that education forms only one part of a child’s development; it needs to be reinforced with a value based approach too. We engage children in learning activities that equip them to bring about change in matters affecting their lives, and ultimately become responsible citizens who go on to improve their communities.
Children have full ownership of the process of change. There’s no top-down lecturing about morals and values, no condescension; children are treated as full human beings. We use innovative teaching methods based on group activities and discussion to enable children to make sense of the world around them, reach their own conclusions about how they should treat others with empathy, and ask for the things they have a right to. They hold children’s councils, elect leaders, make decisions about how Shaishav is run and where it’s needed in their community. They even lobby for more child-friendly societies at a local and national level.