Pathbhavan started as a ‘Library & Activity Center’ for 8-10 children of Sanjay Nagar Slum in Sama, Vadodara in a rented room inside Sanjay Nagar – Nehru Nagar Slum in May, 2013. The goal was to inculcate reading habit within the local kids who rarely got the opportunity to study in quality schools or to get help from their families in pursuing studies. The aim was also to nurture their talents in extra- curricular activities and to groom them to become sensitive, self reliant and happy citizens of the society.
On understanding the major gap in the children’s inability to read and comprehend core subjects, we at Pathbhavan felt the need for structural transformation. We prioritized the same and established ‘The Learning and Development Centre’ with a clear focus on academics.
Currently we have close to 50 children. Our center is located in the residential area near the Sanjay Nagar slum with ample space to accommodate all our children and all their activities.
Lack of quality education, awareness, resources, and belief in irrational practices, superstitions, domestic violence and substance abuse are few of the primary factors which compel children from families of limited means to miss out on opportunities of growth. Such children lose out on emotional, physical and social development and are more prone to suffer from depression, low self-esteem, lack of nutrition and so on.
Without quality education, the children are unable to unlock their full potential. Many grow up in the slums as alcoholics, drug addicts, anti-socials, and petty criminals. The high rate of drop-outs in children from the schools, mainly at pre-secondary level is largely due to lack of educational assistance/support at home, deprivation of interest/motivation, lack of interest in continuing education and paucity of financial resources. Over the periods we are constantly observing the trend of sending children to work for earning at an early age as child labour or to the family ‘s menial business. Bullying, narrow-minded competition, sibling rivalry are other challenges which need to be addressed often alongwith academics and other extra-curricular training.