This GSD, TSKL conducted their project, Blue Sky near Bilawal House from 26th of December through 6th of January. Blue Sky is one of the many projects TSKL operates, and as the name suggests, it is a project which breaks the stereotypes usually attached to education by showing that knowledge could be imparted without the need of a formal classroom. An unconventional approach to imparting education to the underprivileged makes Blue Sky one of the most ambitious projects of TSKL.
The project is centered on educating children that are forced to streets to earn for themselves and their families instead of receiving education. Shehzaib Ali Azfar described his decision to volunteer for Blue Sky by saying that “Other projects of TSKL cater to people who are already receiving some sort of education; however, Blue Sky differentiates itself by teaching children who are denied their right to learn.” Another volunteer of the project, Bilal Hanif added; “the whole aim of Blue Sky is quite intriguing since you go out on the streets to teach children for whom education is not a privilege.”
One of the most important steps leading up to Blue Sky’s execution is the identification of a location where a sizeable amount of underprivileged children are present, which in this year’s GSD, has been the whereabouts of Bilawal House. Blue Sky’s mode of operation is based on teaching children the core concepts that they need the most in their lives such as the understanding of frequently used words, street signs and most important of all the ability to read and write. The curriculum used by TSKL for Blue Sky is also flexible for this particular reason which also helps accommodate children from varying knowledge backgrounds and age groups.
As one might come to expect, the unorthodox nature of the project poses several obstacles along the way to execution, which CMO of TSKL, Muhammad Rohan, elaborated by saying that “Security and funding have been the core challenges for Blue Sky since its inception.” In addition to that, the consistent attendance of students has also been a persistent issue for the project mainly due to the discouraging attitude of parents who continue to abstain their children from seeking education.
However, despite all the challenges, volunteers of Blue Sky report that the enthusiasm of children, in general, has been off the charts which for them, and is the most important take away as it makes them believe that this project could motivate underprivileged children to attain formal education in the future.