Education equips individuals, communities, and society with knowledge and skills for social, economic and
political advancement. It is reasonable to assume that remote villages, habitations in difficult terrain
and low-income urban neighbourhoods are more likely to be poorly served. Further, children who have low
social and economic status, are first generation learners, are differently abled, or work for a living are
particularly vulnerable to being excluded from the educational system. It is also an instrument that helps
reduce barriers of gender, caste, and class. However, universal access to quality education is yet to become
a reality in large parts of the country. School can be a powerful means to build self-confidence, and inculcate
values of self-reliance, honesty, integrity, tolerance, respect, and dignity. Society needs to deliberate on the
paradigm of education, its relationship with equity and social justice, and its notion of citizenship.
Therefore, NFI has a critical role to play in making children from marginalized communities and areas access
mainstream education of reasonably good quality.
The objectives of NFI’s Elementary Education Programme are:
Facilitating elementary education and mainstream schooling for disadvantaged communities,
in areas poorly served by state schools
Promoting quality elementary education
Improving public understanding of issues in elementary education
NFI has a critical role to play in making children from marginalized communities and areas access mainstream
education of reasonably good quality. NFI remains committed to strengthen institutions (ngos, education centres,
child resource centres, LSG structures, parents committees etc) that foster wholesome education with focus on holistic
learning, good values and responsible citizenship among children. For this, NFI would target not only children of 6-14
years but also early learning among 3-6 years old. NFI is committed to facilitate the establishment and mainstreaming
of such institutions in geographically remote areas and amidst marginalized communities (adivasis/ tribals and minorities).
NFI would support NGOs to run or deepen their child resource centres and ensure that the children become part of mainstream schooling.
Specifically NFI would support tutorials, resource centres for children of politically and geographically alienated communities,
marginalized castes (dalits/OBCs) , indigenous and non indigenous tribal living in difficult circumstances
( conflicts; politically and socially turbulent areas). It would seek to nurture seedbeds of innovations
(for example innovations in making classrooms friendly and inclusive for the differently abled) in education
through the education centres set up by the NGOs . Focus would be on Northeast, Bihar and Jharkhand.
Education of Marginalized Children (EMC) programme
NFI and Shamdasani Foundation have entered into a partnership to support grassroots organizations in their endeavor to promote quality education. Titled "Education of Marginalized Children (EMC) programme", the partnership provides the much needed impetus and critical resources support to five CSOs in the financial year 2015-16. These organizations are mostly from Northeast India and Bihar. While Shamdasani Foundation provides the monetary support, NFI remains the bridging partner.