Loyola Kapepaladi School

Loyola Kapepaladi School, Pannur

The need for a permanent school in Pannur

SPONSOR A CHILD

Why sponsor a child?

The new school building – some facts and figures

What will happen to the temporary premises once the permanent school is built?


Loyola Kapepaladi School, Pannur

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Loyola Kapepaladi school has now been completed and the children are very happily settled in their new building. There are 320 students in classrooms on the ground and first floor, with capacity for 240 more children as and when funding permits.

In 2011 a small, temporary school was built in the village of Pannur, funded by Supporting Dalit Children. To keep the costs of this temporary school to a minimum, much of the building work was carried out by villagers as well as 24 Jesuit novices who came to stay in Pannur for a month specifically to help with this project.  The school motto is the same as Loyola Xavier School - 'Reaching the Unreached' - its purpose to reach out to Dalit and other impoverished children living in the nearby backward and remote villages. Before the inauguration ceremony Father Eric addressed the parents; he told them it was their school in their village for their children.  Their children are the future .  You could see from their faces how inspired these poor people were.

 

Dec2011_8All pupils at Loyola Kapepaladi School are from families that are the most in need; the 'poorest of the poor'. Priority is given to girls and Devadasi children (those belonging to ex-temple prostitutes), as they face the greatest discrimination within society.

 

The children are currently aged between 3 and 10 years old.

 

During their lessons they use chalk, slates and exercise books. These children are keen to learn. After just a few months they have learnt to count and to recite the alphabet as well as speak a few words in English. Teachers here use songs and rhymes in English to begin each child's education, which is extremely effective. As we have found at Loyola Xavier School, the children at Loyola Kapepaladi exude a wonderful sense of joy despite the terrible poverty and oppression they have been brought up with.

 

Children taking their exams.

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New SPONSOR PARENTS are urgently needed for the rising numbers of pupils at this school.  Here is Angel Mary, one of many children needing a sponsor parent.  For more details please go to the Sponsor a Child page.

Angel Mary

 


The need for a permanent school in Pannur

'To be a beacon of light to eradicate illiteracy, caste system,
bonded labour and discrimination of all types.'

(One of the school's mission statements)
  • Many hundreds of Dalit and other impoverished children, live in Pannur and the surrounding villages. Their parents struggle to make ends meet and children are often sent to work to help bring more income into the family home. Many children enrolled in the temporary school were previously working; their parents now understanding the importance of education and the opportunities it will give their children. State education in this district is poor, teachers and other pupils discriminate against the Dalit children in many ways that we couldn't imagine, and as a consequence of this discrimination, and the family history of oppression, the vast majority of Dalit children leave school permanently at the age of 11 or before.
  • Without decent qualifications, the sad reality is that there are seldom opportunities for Dalit children to do anything other than follow the same path as their illiterate parents, i.e. an insecure lifetime of hard work in the fields. But here is the truth and something we can help to bring about - education - a first-class, English-medium education for the children who would normally never have this opportunity, will break this grinding cycle of poverty and hardship.
  • The inaccessibility of many villages, made worse by unmade roads, has resulted in increasing numbers of these children being unable to access a school. Pannur is centrally placed and is therefore an ideal location for a large primary school to serve the Dalit and other marginalized children in this area. Two school buses collect children from 15 villages, starting at 7 a.m. for the morning run, and finishing at 7 p.m. in the afternoon. A long day for the pupils living the furthest away from Pannur, but the opportunities in later years from having attended Kapepaladi school, make their long days worthwhile.
  • There is now a small boarding hostel in the village of Pannur, for children living in the most remote villages.
  • Father Eric regularly visits women's groups in remote villages to hear of their concerns for their children. These mothers have heard of Xavier School and desperately want their children to benefit from an English education and gain a life-line out of poverty.
  • It is better for children to start learning a second language i.e. English from as young as 3, when the brain is more receptive to bi-lingual teaching, rather than wait until secondary school age. Therefore a school is needed in close proximity to where these young children live.Dec2011_6

This photo shows children who are not yet going to school.


SPONSOR A CHILD

Please go to the SPONSOR A CHILD page for details of  children needing sponsorship.


Why sponsor a child?

  • Loyola Kapepaladi school was founded to give hope and life to children exploited by a selfish and powerful caste system. These children need financial assistance with the cost of their education as they receive no Government support, and neither does the school.
  • All children at Loyola Kapepaladi School are looking for sponsor parents as their own parents are too poor to afford their education. Sponsorship costs £20 per month by standing order, or £240 per year. More information about how to sponsor a child can be found on the Sponsor a Child page, please click here.
  • An English medium education is the best possible education giving students an opportunity to attain first-class qualifications. English medium qualifications are increasingly necessary when competing for every day jobs within Indian society.
  • Discrimination and alienation against innocent poverty-stricken children is wrong. Educating a Dalit child is the first step towards confronting this injustice.
  • 100% of every donation plus any Gift Aid reclaimable, is sent directly to the school. There is no 'middle man' and no deductions of any kind as the charity is run totally voluntarily.
  • Sponsoring a child is personal; detailed letters are written to sponsor parents twice yearly and letters or cards back to the sponsored child are welcomed.
  • General news is communicated regularly to sponsor parents.


The new school building – some facts and figures

  • Annual intakes of children will increase the total student numbers at Loyola Kapepaladi School every year. A much larger primary school is therefore needed to educate children up to 16 years old. At the age of 16 they would all transfer to Xavier School to complete their secondary education as well as the first three years of their university degree.
  • The dream is to build a school on two floors with 18 classrooms to educate 900+ children. The land has been purchased for this project by a benefactor and the school will be built alongside the temporary school.
  • The building work will be carried out in phases as and when funds become available and children will move into their new classrooms as each phase is completed.  Phase I is complete, the ground floor is now finished.
  • It is anticipated that the total building cost will be in the region of £550,000, to date £200,000 has been raised for this project.
  • £50,000 has been raised by Heath Mount School in Hertfordshire. Teachers and students have traveled to India twice to see the progress of Pannur's new school. They were taken to the villages where students and their families live and were shocked at the levels of deprivation, lack of opportunities available to Dalit people and the harsh discrimination these people suffer.
  • Heath Mount are a major benefactor and partner in this exciting new project and students and parents have already begun their fundraising campaign.
  • We are seeking other benefactors in order to be able to complete the building of the school.

To make a donation towards the cost of the new school please go to the DONATE page.


What will happen to the temporary premises once the permanent school is built?

Once the larger school has been completed, the temporary school building will not become redundant; there are already plans for its future use. It will become a tailoring skills centre for illiterate teenage girls who have missed out on an education and who would like to set up their own enterprise from home. For more information about the Tailoring Scheme, please click here



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Supporting Dalit Children, Charity Commission Registration Number 1125102