Chepang children elated, upbeat to go to school

- PAWAN YADAV, Bharatpur

Aug 23, 2014-Children from economically deprived Chepang families have been overwhelmed and elated after learning that they would finally get to go to school. NGOs, social activists and private schools contributing for undisrupted operation of schools in recent times has helped the children educate themselves and food facilities have saved them from malnutrition. The support has ushered in a change in their lifestyle since a couple of years.

At the meantime, KP Kiran Sharma, who works for the welfare of Chepangs, said they were trying to send 15 children to be sheltered and taken care of at the newly-established ‘Ashram’ by Help Nepal Network in Dhulikhel, for the environment of the schools in the region were not child-friendly. Stressing on the need for all Chepang children to be educated, Sharma said that the government built a hostel which provides food and accommodation free of cost to the children.

A majority of Chepangs live in rural areas of Siddhi, Kaule, Korak, Lothar, Chandibhanjyang, Darahkhani, Kabilas, Shaktikhor and Darechowk. Siddhi, Korak, and Lothar are relatively remote in terms of geographical location.

According to Jeet Bahadur Chepang of Siddhi-3, he is taking his kids to school in hoping for their bright future. He arrived at Antyodaya Boarding School after making a tough 50 kilometres journey on Wednesday for the admission of his 11 year old son. Chepang said that free boarding facility are seen as luring incentives to get their children enrolled.

There are around 30,000 Chepangs in the district and over 2,000 children at an age where they should be going to schools but have been deprived of education due to financial woes.

According to the 2011 census, there are over 68,300 Chepangs across the country.

Published: 24-08-2014 09:16

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