GyanSetu: Centers of Community Transformation About

GyanSetu comprises of Community Education Centres in low-income communities and migrant labor colonies for out-of-school children, both in urban and rural areas. It caters to school-children who have not been able to achieve the expected level of learning. GyanSetu also provides a site to build an awareness of the value of education, and prepares and transitions children to formal public schools.

In the last five years, GyanSetu centers have evolved to act as hubs of community transformation. By working with mothers, GyanSetu centers aim to increase women’s awareness of their rights, and that of their children (particularly their daughters). An issue-based approach is taken to sensitise the mothers about issues relevant to them. Support is extended in cases of domestic violence, abuse, substance abuse, child marriage, (amongst other issues) in collaboration with Suraksha (a family counselling organisation).

India has close to 20 million children who are out-of-school, with Uttar Pradesh having 1.6 million. Many of our centers are run in the heavily concentrated urban informal (often termed illegal) slums called ‘bastis’. An example of one of our urban centers is GyanSetu Gomti Nagar Railway Station. It is located in the basti on railway land. It is inhabited by approximately 1200 people living in around 200 jhuggis . Most of the residents are labourers on daily wages and have migrated from nearby districts. Estimated average family size is 6. Mothers work as maids and children stay home and take care of their younger siblings. GyanSetus were designed to meet the educational needs of children in similar such contexts.