Prem ni Parab: Fountain of Love
Following the earthquake in 2001, 47 new primary schools were built to replace the damaged schools in and around the Sayla district.
Although the newly built schools provided an excellent learning environment, the quality of education being imparted in these and other rural government schools was poor and a major change was essential.
Bhaishree assembled a panel of experienced, dedicated educationalists to draw up an action plan to transform these schools into homes for true education, helping their pupils to create a better future for themselves and their families.
The State Government immediately approved the plans presented leading to the ‘Prem ni Parab’ (‘Fountain of Love’) project being launched in January 2004. Initially incorporating 51 schools, its success led to the Gujarat Government requesting the project to extend to include all 128 schools in Sayla District, engaging over 25,000 students and 860 teachers.
The project recognises that teachers, parents and students are the three key constituents of the educational process and the involvement of all three is essential in transforming attitudes towards education.
Students: In an environment of enthusiasm, creativity, healthy competition, mutual respect and trust, each child is invited to unlock his or her vast potential. The Prem ni Parab project provides equipment and support for games, drama, elocution classes, music lessons, arts and crafts and visits to museums and historic places. It also encourages the teaching of ethics, morals and care for the environment. The aim of these activities is to nurture and expand these young minds.
Teachers: Throughout the year Prem ni Parab organises capacity building workshops for school teachers. Teachers are trained in modern teaching techniques by leading experts and professors and are encouraged to make classes interesting, interactive, practical and thought-provoking. Teachers are taught to develop a bond of mutual love and respect with their pupils, ensuring that the capabilities of each child are valued and developed.
Parents: Historically, many students dropped out of school at an early age. By engaging parents in their child’s education, drop-out rates have reduced from 29% down to below 3.89%, and participation in extra-curricular activities has increased. Parent committees have been formed to forge closer relationships with teachers and schools.
Sayla district was ranked 9th in Surendranagar county in the year 2000 yet today it is ranked 3rd. Sayla has since won a ‘Nationwide Best Teacher’, a ‘State-wide Best Student’ and several other national and state awards.
Click on the video link here to view an insightful indtroductory video on the Prem ni Parab project.