What better day than Teachers Day to reflect upon the role of education and our gurus in achieving our present status in life? We can probably never measure that impact quantitatively. However, no one will deny the fact that we are what we are today because of the education our teachers imparted to us. Education shaped our lives. That very well implies that children living in abject poverty in the remote areas of India, who don’t have access to the outer world, have just one chance to change their lives- through education and for them people who give them that one window of hope are no less than Gods.
Uttam Teron is one such revered figure in Pamohi village and 10 other neighbouring tribal villages near Guwahati. In 2003 he started Parijat Academy with an aim of achieving 100% literacy in Pamohi. Parijat (meaning “heavenly flower”) Academy is a school for children of families with low income. Teron believes that education is the birth right of every child and no child –rich or poor should be left behind.
Uttam was born to a train driver father and a homemaker mother who never went to school. After finishing his graduation from a city college, he returned to his village. He saw children helping out their parents in the trade of selling local brew. He decided to start a learning centre for those underprivileged children. He invested the Rs 800 he had earned as a private tutor in constructing a room with a tin roof and bamboo walls at a cowshed. A pair of desks and benches was procured from a village carpenter. Parijat started its first class with just 4 students.
The school, today, has 12 classrooms and classes up to Xth. It is semi-concretised and has a guest room and a dormitory that can house 15 students.Pamohi has a population of around 2,000. Teron says 95% of the people in the village are literate today. Teron pays Rs2,500 each to the 23 faculty members. He says donations received from well-wishers have kept the academy going.
You can contact them Parijat Academy at :
Parijat Academy, Pamohi P.O., Garchuk, Guwahati –781035, Assam,India.
Image courtesy: http://youth619.blogspot.in/