Thursday, 22 August 2019
Located in a South Asian city with a population of 16 million, the Urban Renewal Project (URP) aims to improve the lives of a large slum community. One service URP provides is one-room primary schools. These primary schools are free, allowing many children who are unable to afford education to attend. Currently, the project is catering to the needs of over 100 students. Below, you can read about the impact of URP on one student, Niem.
One student of URP is 10-year-old Niem. Just like many other children in the slum, Niem and his 14-year-old sister weren’t receiving any education.
His father works as a broom seller and his mother goes to various houses as a helper. As his parents have very little money, they are unable to pay for their children’s school expenses.
However, Niem’s father enrolled the two kids into URP after he heard that the project provides a good education and has a positive influence on students.
Since Niem started attending the primary school, Niem’s parents have witnessed a big transformation in his life. Niem can now read and write very well in both his own language and English. This skill is crucial in equipping him to break the cycle of poverty in his family.
As well as learning Math and about the environment in class, Niem also enjoys strengthening his creative skills. In school, he has learnt how to draw pictures, colour, sing and tell poems.
Before Niem attended the school, he did not obey his parents and would not listen to them if he was asked to do something. Now, Niem’s parents describe him as an obedient boy.
He no longer fights with his friends and behaves himself when he plays with others. Niem’s parents excitedly share with other parents the impact this project has had on their family and the quality education it has provided their two kids.
Niem and his sister no longer identify with the other kids in the area who spend their days at home or on the street, rather than attending school. The children who don’t receive any education, often become addicted to drugs and the girls are more likely to get married at an early age.
The teachers at URP have said that many of the schoolchildren’s parents notice not only a development in their child’s educational progress, but also in their moral behaviour.
This change is one goal of the school as it aims to see the community transformed holistically.
URP also conducts monthly parent-teacher meetings with spiritual content, adolescent meetings and after school moral classes for the school’s students.
You can help see kids like Niem receive an education they otherwise wouldn’t be able to afford by donating to the West Dhaka Urban Renewal here
Pray for the URP team as they seek to see families in the community transformed by God’s love as they empower both children and parents.
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