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S. Child’s fundraising event

Spectrum supporting Street Child's Musahar project

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What's it about?

About Street Child: Street Child is a charity which helps some of the world’s poorest and most vulnerable children to access education. We currently work in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Nepal, with a new project in Nigeria. We remove barriers to quality education, including family poverty, lack of value for education and a lack of schools and trained teachers. We deliver everything through local partners and, since 2008; together we have built/renovated 376 schools and are now helping to educate over 53,000 young people. Nepal is one of the poorest and least developed countries in the world and is the second poorest country in Asia (World Bank 2015). Approximately 620,000 children aged 5-17 are engaged in hazardous work while some 13,000 girls are being sexually exploited in Kathmandu. It is education, which offers Nepal’s children a safer, and more secure future. Following the recent devastating earthquakes, Street Child has constructed 220 schools, trained 500 teachers, and distributed 1,500 emergency education materials in Nepal in partnership with various donors, including UNICEF. Whilst we have helped to rebuild education for thousands of children, one of the crucial challenges that remains in Nepal is the provision of appropriate, targeted schooling for the countless children who are invisible within the system. Moving forward from our emergency aid response and having established a reputation in Nepal, Street Child is now developing responses to the educational needs of the most vulnerable children. As we've been re-building schools in earthquake-affected communities, we have identified pockets of 'invisible' children who have no access to education at all. Our work in Nepal is focused on working with other local organisations to ensure that our projects address issues which are wider than ‘just’ education, and work towards broader social change. Both projects outlined below will pilot an intensive education intervention that will enable sustainable transition into ongoing education and/or employment: a step towards changing attitudes and increasing the capacity of the system to create opportunities for marginalised groups. Longer term, the education and resulting economic empowerment will lead to social and political empowerment: raise awareness of rights and recognition; encourage confidence in accessing services and social networks; increase resilience and the ability to resist harm; encourage participation in decision making; and promote gender equality- significantly changing whole communities lives for the better. The project: The Musahar community is the most politically marginalised, economically exploited, and socially ostracized in Nepal.Extreme poverty traps thousands in debt bondage, a prevalent form of contemporary slavery in Nepal. They are ranked 129 out of 130 castes in terms of Human Development Indicators (NHRC 2008) and live in hard to reach, remote areas, with their “untouchable” status and linguistic segregation contributing to further isolation. Musahar girls bear the brunt of this oppression, facing discrimination due to their caste, class and gender. Girls are unable to access water sources; sanitation and hygiene services; or health, education and transport services. Combined with fears for safety and security outside their communities, girls are also often victims of physical, psychological and sexual harm by their husbands and fathers, due to rampant alcohol abuse in the community (Bishwakarma 2008, Street Child 2016). Education is the last priority in the face of extreme poverty, and the literacy rate for Musahar Girls is just 3.8% compared to a national average of 77.5% (UN Universal Periodic Review 2015).In school, these girls face significant exclusion, and frequent abuse from teachers and peers who see Musahars, and girls in particular, as uneducable. School is ultimately seen as having little purpose, with no paths to further education or employment, compelling those that enroll to drop out early (Giri 2012, Street Child 2016).100% of Musahar children are out of school after the age of 10 (IIDS 2008) Street Child wants to support Musahar Girls, aged 10 to 19, in Dhanusha and Mahottari to achieve functional literacy and numeracy through an intensive education intervention, and make sustainable transitions into employment through livelihoods and life skills support.This project will address the broader social and political issues facing the Musahar community in order to facilitate holistic development and systematic change long term. We will work with local partners to offer: 1) Accelerated Learning Programme of intensive classes to achieve functional literacy and numeracy; 2)Inclusive Education Program, enabling girls to reintegrate into regular school and overcome exclusion; 3) Livelihoods Support Programme to overcome extreme poverty, which includes a £150 cash grant, training and coaching, and support to transition into suitable employment. 4) Life Skills Workshops, offering a safe space with social worker and peer support to enable girls to confront violence and abuse and increase confidence accessing services and social networks andto encourage self-sufficiency. Street Child will leverage our established and effective local partnerships and experience to improve learning outcomes and economic empowerment of these extremely marginalised girls. The long-term goal is to catalyse a change in attitudes towards Musahars. Over time, empowering Musahar girls will allow them to live a life of self-sufficiency and dignity, invest in education of their children, and have significant long term benefits to the entire Musahar community. The Street Child team sends a big thank you to Spectrum for the ongoing support I use because: Donating on is straightforward and secure. Afterwards I pass the money we’ve raised on to the relevant aid projects.

S. Child

S. Child announced this fundraising event on 09 February 2018.

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