Given national and local conversations about education, it’s pretty clear that our idea of education is almost exclusively linked to children. When we imagine minds newly opened to levels of greater understanding, what we typically picture are children learning the foundational blocks of knowledge that build the complex world around us.
But often overlooked are the adults who, for a multitude of reasons, did not gain this foundation in their youth, and who are now navigating the world without vital literacy skills. They struggle to find employment. They struggle to help their children with homework. They struggle to understand a bus schedule, instructions on a bottle of medication, and nutritional information on a package of food. This is because literacy means not only the ability to read, but the ability to read well, to process information and solve problems. Therefore, they need to learn, too, and their education matters.
So if functional illiteracy is a void that consumes much more than simply the ability to read, then improved adult literacy will inversely have an enormous positive impact.
“SYAHI”- the adult literacy center (ALC) of Divya Jyoti jagrati Sansthan’s Manthan Program, is successfully running in the Shakurpur Basti, New Delhi. 4th Feb 2017 marked the convocation ceremony of the First batch of ALC students and the initiation of Batch II. 15 ALC scholars were given report cards and certificates by Sadhvi Surotama Bharti Ji and Sadhvi Rachita Bharti Ji, Preachers DJJS. The new batch of 15 students was honored by Scholar I Cards, stationary kits and course material. The occasion was graced by the young club members of Sri Guru Gobind Singh College of Commerce, who provided printed course material to the students.
During the event, SYAHI Scholars presented their stories of transformation through emotional and inspirational testimonies. They said that a mother’s reading skill is the most important factor when it comes to her children’s academic success. Helping an adult to become more literate now has the power to increase her children’s success in the future, effectively breaking the cycle of low literacy and correlated poverty that plague our communities. Many adults in this situation today realize the need to be educated and are enrolling in SYAHI- literacy program with great enthusiasm and positive apprpoach.
Poem recitations and Prayers were also presented by the tiny-tots of Manthan during the program.
Adult learners, and the need for improved adult literacy, deserve our attention and efforts because these people deserve the opportunity not just to survive, but to flourish. Their success is everyone’s success.