Improving the school infrastructure for children from poor families

India is an extremely diverse country: a billion people of different religions live there, 23 languages are officially recognised, and there are innumerable regional and linguistic distinctions. Economically speaking, the country has been making progress for several years. Large companies are investing massively in its economy, the middle class is becoming increasingly affluent, and the standard of living continues to rise steadily. But unfortunately, many people are left behind. As there is little scope for upward social mobility, the lower castes often have no choice but to accept their destiny. The economic boom in their country almost completely passes them by. This is why CSI Lëtzebuerg is supporting children from difficult social backgrounds through a project designed to improve learning conditions.

The project in brief:

At St Antony's School in Pondicherry (South-East India), 800 children with a disability and from socially disadvantaged families are taught free of charge. Their parents mostly have badly paid jobs in the informal sector (e.g. as porters or rickshaw drivers), leaving them with no money to spare. The school employs 30 teachers, of whom six are specially trained to teach children with disabilities.

Although the school receives grants from the state, it must cover infrastructure costs itself. CSI is therefore helping St Antony's School to finance various acquisitions in order to improve the quality of learning for its pupils.

For example, CSI is paying for the equipping of a computer laboratory and the purchase of a new drinking water tank. A meeting room for parents will also be set up as part of the project, and tables and benches for the new library will be purchased. Given the sometimes intolerable temperatures in the classrooms, CSI will also fund the purchasing of 14 ceiling fans.

In addition to the spending on infrastructure, pupils with psychological disorders will be cared for throughout the duration of the project by specially trained staff.

Total project cost: (2017-2020): €180 419.80

80% of this amount will be provided by the Luxembourg Foreign Ministry. The remaining 20% (€36 083,96) will be covered by CSI together with the partner organisation.

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