The 4th SDG “Ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning”.
Government of Nepal, Ministry of Education, District Education Office, Biratnagar, Morang
This project addresses SDG4 through providing access to quality affordable education to young rural school children from low income groups and their parents. This includes street children, children of vulnerable women and their parents, such those who are homeless, single mothers, divorced/Separated women, unemployed women and other similar vulnerable groups. The project has four components;
1) « providing modern affordable education in rural areas »: the JBK Public School which encompasses classes well equipped with all the necessary infrastructural facilities from Pre-Nursery to grade 10. It increases learning outcomes of students and provides a conducive learning environment through extra activities. Scholarships are given to the most needy bright children. JBK created an e-learning platform that will enhance learning and education outcomes of the children.
2) « enabling lifelong learning in rural areas » which encompasses the Child Program and the Vocational Program. The Child Program…has the holistic approach of the development of the child (2 to 10), laying an excellent foundation for creative learning. The Vocational Program is for youth to acquire the life skills needed for the labor market. They either get a job in a company or they create their own businesses.
3) JBS Youth Micro-finance (Nawa Bihani) is intended to improve the lives of school children and their parents through an integrated set of products, such as micro-finance, education, health care, clean energy, livelihoods. This package for students allow them to be « financially literate with access to savings so that they can access what they need » and be able to help their parents if need be. JBS launched the loan, savings and insurance products for parents. The results of these initiatives lead to better learning, better health, protection of girls against early marriage.
4) Enhancing government schools: JBS signed an agreement with the government to replicate the soft infrastructure JBS model in 500 primary and secondary schools. This Shows the great impact of the JBK project. Students, parents, teachers community at large have largely benefited.
Girls have gained a lot as they stay at school and learn and are protected against early marriage. There are less drop out. Students are learning about the benefits of savings and are also helping their parents through their micro-savings. Now they are aware of their health and sanitation. Therefore, the objectives of the project have been met.
The project is replicable and has been very successful in targeting a sizable public school, saving a private school from closing. One basic innovative aspect is the integration of multiple components to provide quality affordable and relevant-education to worthwhile beneficiaries, including access to finance, health and clean water.