India has made some rapid economic advancement in recent years, yet around 28% of the Indian population lives below the poverty line. The disparity of wealth in India is plain to see. It is quite a shocking view to see a state of the art apartment complex being built next to a slum community living in complete poverty. The slums are a regrettable facett of life in India.
Indian culture places a major emphasis on education, but unfortunately the education system in India is still a work in progress. Class sizes go far beyond suitable capacities and schools are highly understaffed. PMGY supports a number of slum schools located around Faridabad. These NGOs provide free education, school supplies, food and uniforms in order to encourage parents to let their children go to school, rather than being forced to wander the streets begging and collecting rubbish to earn money.
The children at the schools range from 3 years-old right up to the age of 16. We support two main schools in and around Faridabad. The schools are located within the slum areas, due to which the facilities are extremely basic and conditions are cramped. However you will find the spirit of the children and their passion to learn a real joy to behold. Volunteers provide invaluable support to the teaching staff and the presence of a fluent English speaker brings a major boost to the children’s educational development.
Eco Slum School
The Eco school is based in a local slum community. The children are aged between 3 and 15, although the average age is between 7-10. The school was set up by Vishy and Kranti in 2010 to provide children who may not otherwise have the opportunity, with free basic primary education.
Predominately, volunteers are encouraged to teach the children basic English and Maths, however, they are welcome to discuss other teaching ideas with Kranti, who is present at the school on a day to day basis. In addition to teaching, volunteers on this project are expected to carry out the assembly daily, which consist largely of nursery rhymes and dancing.
The majority of volunteers who have signed up for the teaching programme will spend their time working with this school, however, this cannot always be guaranteed.
The Nerhu school is based in a neighbouring community to that of the Eco School. Education here is not free.
You should arrive into Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi (airport code DEL) on the selected Sunday start date. Programmes start on the 1st and 3rd Sunday of each month. You will be met at the airport by one of our local staff or an appointed driver who will be holding a named sign. They will take you to your accommodation where you will spend the rest of your day at leisure.
The programme ends on the Sunday of your final week and you should depart the accommodation on this day.
As we are not medical experts we cannot, unfortunately, tell you exactly what vaccinations you’ll need to obtain so it is vital you consult your local GP or travel clinic a few months before you intend to travel. Your local doctor/nurse will advise you as to what vaccinations and malaria prevention is needed for entry into your volunteer destination.
ESSENTIAL PROGRAM INFORMATION
Like all our projects in India, it is possible to combine this project with any of our other programmes. If this is something you’d like to do, please highlight this in your online application. Alternatively, you can discuss the possibility with our local team during your in-country orientation.
For the majority of our programmes you can apply at any time. However, we advise that you apply as soon as possible to ensure we have availability on the programme – particularly if you’re looking to travel between June and August, as spaces can fill up very quickly during this period.
It is best that you apply sooner rather than later as some of our programmes only have a limited capacity and spaces get filled very quickly.
Can I use this program as part of a university or college placement?
It is certainly possible to use one of PMGY’s programmes as part of your university or college placement. Project staff can sign off any paperwork required by your course tutors. PMGY regularly receives medical, childcare, psychology and nursing placement students at our projects around the world and we have ties with some of the leading universities.
If you’re a course tutor and would like further information about how one of PMGY’s programmes could meet the placement requirements for your degree course then please contact us.
Is it safe to travel to PMGY destinations?
Although our volunteers work in the developing world, we always ensure our host locations are safe. Each programme has been extensively researched and has passed our strict vetting process. Our UK team undergo an extensive routine when establishing our in-country infrastructures and we continue to monitor our safety procedures on a regular basis. Furthermore, we monitor the stability of our volunteer destinations on a daily basis. Through our constant contact with consulates and embassies and our reports from our overseas teams, we are able to ensure that our volunteers are never placed in unstable regions.
The PMGY team have visited and participated in every programme we offer and verified them based on our own independent criteria. We carefully inspect every little detail of our set-up. From inspecting the living conditions, checking out the neighbourhoods you’ll be staying in, to tasting the food you’ll be eating – each and every programme we establish has gone through a lengthy and rigorous vetting process. Risk assessments have been written for all areas in which PMGY operate and our experienced local coordinators are always on-hand to manage any emergencies that may occur. Our UK team are always on the road reviewing our risk management procedures in the field and monitoring local conditions.
In emergency situations we have the necessary protocols and equipment in place and we are able to evacuate our volunteers from potential dangers. Our local coordinators are trained to deal with emergency circumstances.
All volunteers will receive a PMGY Volunteer Handbook once they have paid their deposit and confirmed their place on the programme. We will send you an email entitled ‘Welcome to PMGY’ which will include a link where you can download the Volunteer Handbook. Please note that we DO NOT send a hardcopy of the PMGY Volunteer Handbook.
This Handbook contains literally everything you need to know – from what to pack, to how to obtain a visa, to local language guides. It is really important that you read through the Volunteer Handbook carefully once you’ve downloaded it. If you require any further information not covered in the Volunteer Handbook then our team are always on-hand to assist you.