The idea of GSK emerged from the need to sustain an ecodevelopment programme being implemented in the area between 1987 to 1997
Kalyan Hiraman, an unlettered but wise buffalo herder, sought to set up an initiative which would equip the next gen of the community of the area with the needed capacities to take on the challenges of life and livelihoods and the relationship with the forests and forest department without having to depend on external support.
An initiative which could provide quality education to children around the Ranthambhor National Park was envisioned as the way forward. Sachin Sachdeva and Jyotsna Lall were entrusted the responsibility to set this up and an organisation comprising people from the area was set up to provide the institutional platform to the idea.
Gramin Shiksha Kendra is a non-profit that operates in the Sawai Madhopur and Khandar blocks of Sawai Madhopur district and in the Uniara block of Tonk district. GSK has set up 3 schools for 400 children that serve as resource schools in the area. These ‘fishbowls’ let the communities experience our idea of quality education so that they may then demand similar quality from the government. GSK’s Vistaar programme aims to work with government schools surrounding the resource schools to encourage others take up the best practices from Uday schools, Vistaar currently reaches out to 70 neighbouring government schools with an aim to work with all government schools in Sawai Madhopur in the future.
GSK believes that schools are an extension of the community. They are not delinked from the society but an integral part of it. For the society to change, schools will play a crucial role. And for schools to improve, communities need to engage with the schools. The GSK program is built on the idea that the community is a partner in the process of education, rather than schools being merely a service provider to them. Thus, community involvement lies at the heart of all GSK’s interventions.
Thoughtful, supportive and sensitive children will create a world which is equitable, supportive, which believes in peaceful coexistence, celebrates diversity and culture.
Education will set children free and help them to be curious, supportive, sensitive, thoughtful, aware, open to learning and have the abilities to take on responsibilities and fulfill them.