SHAMA, Inc. A nonprofit 501(c)3 organization
Jagdish Chander
2460 Crescent Court, Plover WI 54467  (715) 341-1538
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 Adult literacy students with teachers

Adult Literacy Program

Most of us know that being able to read and write is essential to being able to find good work, yet many of the destitute women in India do not know how to read. Adult literacy classes are helping to remedy this lack.

These classes are usually offered in a school building after school hours. When Harish Paramwasar visited the school in Mhaskal village in 2003 on behalf of SHAMA, Inc., there were women from ages 20 to 60 learning to read and write. When the 60-year-old woman was asked why she was studying, she replied, “I will be able to sign instead of giving thumb prints. I will be able to read letters and write them.”  Another woman who works as a street sweeper said now she would be able to read the names of the streets she sweeps.

The first literacy program in Mhaskal started in February, 2003 and lasted for a period of 3 months. Thirty-two women enrolled; in that same year 16 of them had learned to read and write. The second class began in January 2004, where 47 were enrolled. Four young literate girls are employed to teach the adult learners.

Jyoti visited one of the women who has learned to read through the literacy program in Mumbai. The woman (60) works as a street sweeper, and she said she was thrilled to be able to read the street signs on the streets she sweeps for the first time.

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