April Adventures,Fight against corruption, Meetings and more..
CACR’s April Adventure
Citizen Association of Child Rights
- Meeting with Education Officer and Mr.Astad from BCPT
- Meeting with Superintendent Manasi Apte and parents with CACR member (Dr. Richa)
Meeting with parents in the Nityanand school with five CACR members
11th, 12th and 17th - Computer training teachers of H-west teachers by Dr.Wagle
- Students from KJ Somaiya interest in volunteering
16th - Meeting at IIT
- Meeting DMC w.r.t Varun school parents
- Meeting with EO on enrolment drive posters
- Meeting at Govandi station school w.r.t SDP
and 25th - ADAPT program for BO and HM
- HC order on mid-day meal to allow Centralized Kitchen’s passed
24th - Empowering Times - CACR featured in Standing Ovation
- Meeting musicians with Sandeep
27th - Encroachment on BMC property, in Malad and Andheri found
- Meeting with ORF
27th - Meeting to discuss fund-raising programs
28th - Funding Appeal sent to individuals
29th - Varun results out-Decision to take over the school pending
30th - Meeting with TISS
- Marol police camp’s “toilet issue”, letters received
The month of April brought in summer vacation for the school kids and election duty for the
teachers, but kept CACR members largely occupied in planning for the next academic year,
forging new partnerships, strengthening and reviewing existing ones. All in all a busy month
Our spoken English program with BCPT (The Bombay Community Public Trust) was
implemented in few schools last academic year. To plan better on how to avoid the technical
glitches we had faced in the existing year and to roll out the program in a more efficient manner
next year, Mr.Astad from BCPT and Mr.Mirchandani from CACR met the Education Officer – EO.
The possibility to roll out the program via Virtual classrooms was also discussed.
Finally, it was decided that the DVD’s and TV sets available with the schools be repaired and
used when the schools reopen in June. Mr. Mirchandani will be co-coordinating the project in all
schools of H-WEST Ward.
CACR members have been trying to get RTE laws implemented in all MCGM schools. It was
reported in our previous newsletter - March Edition that Patel Education Trust running Varun
International School (illegally) in the BMC building premises has been commercially exploiting the
parents of school kids by taking 5000 to 20,000 Rupees per child in the name of tuition fees and
also the management has been punishing the students who fail to pay such fees. Both of these
are BLATANT RTE Act Violations. Moreover, parents are threatened by the school Headmaster
not to interact with the Ngo CACR or the media otherwise their children will be expelled from the
CACR members –Dr.Richa, Mr.Nitin, Mrs. Chitre, and Mrs. Vidya Vaidya have been pursuing the
matter with the Education Department to get speedy justice for the parents. Meetings were held
on April 7th and 10th in the school premises wherein parents openly expressed their concerns,
fears, and disappointment with the quality of poor education been given to the students, and
monetary exploitation being done by the school management. CACR has escalated their
complaints to the highest authority – AMC education and sought help for a speedy resolution
before the next academic year begins in June ’14. Print media also carried an article about the
same HERE and HERE
This month also saw two well received training programs carried out by Dr.Sharad Wagle from
CACR and by members of ADAPT (Able Disabled All People Together). Dr. Wagle provided
training to teachers of H-west wards in Basic IT Skills such as computer usage, typing and editing
the document, how to search a document on internet; etc .The AO of H-west “Mrs.Hemlata
Barwal” said that she found the session to be highly useful and informative. In total, teachers,
Beat officers and staff from H-west ward attended the training program by Dr.Wagle on 11th, 12th
and 17th April.
The program by ADAPT was about sensitizing and creating awareness about Inclusive
Education for disabled, handicapped, and special children studying in schools. The RTE
stresses on the need and application of Inclusive Education in all schools of India. The program
was appreciated by all attending Headmasters and Officers. Mrs. Sharmila Donde from ADAPT
has written a brief report about the training program that can be found on the CACR Blog here.
CACR has tied up with IIT Bombay to bridge the digital divide in public schools where the
kids don’t even know the basic parts of a computer. From introducing the students to computers,
to making them confident enough to type, edit and format text; CACR volunteer for Computer
Literacy Project-CLP have come a long way. Using IIT spoken tutorials we could train 600 kids in
schools of Andheri east, Vile Parle (east), Andheri (west), and Chembur. IIT soon plans to
distribute the certificates by organizing an event for current and future volunteers. The details of
implementation of the program in many more schools and teacher training in thirty or more
schools from June 2014 was discussed with Prof. Shyama Iyer when CACR members met her on
16th April. So far students from HR College and VESIT engineering college have volunteered for
the project. Talks are underway to get K.J. Somiaya students involved in the project too. Mr.
Deepak is coordinating with them.
CACR had tied up with Rotary club in their Chatra Adhikar project and nominated many
Rotarians in SMC’s across Mumbai. One such dedicated Rotary club members is Cdr. Jana who
was a SMC member at Govandi municipal school. On April 17th, he and a few other citizen
volunteers met the Headmaster of the school to talk about the progress made so far and discuss
about the SDP-School Development Plan for next year. He has given a detailed feedback about
the points discussed and CACR will be taking it to the concerned department officials to resolve
In a Landmark judgment, the Mumbai High court ordered that the Mid-day meal provided in
BMC schools will no longer be cooked and supplied by the Mahila Bachat Gadh’s (Mid day meal
contractors). But, instead, it will be supplied by the Centralised Kitchens. CACR members have
previously too pulled up erring contractors and complained to the higher authorities about
negligent contractors and HM’s. You can read about it HERE.
“We totally welcome the HC Order making Centralised Kitchens responsible for cooking
and distributing food”
Two new issues of encroachment were bought to CACR notice. School buildings in prime
locations of Malad and Andheri stations are given to private players to set up their own classes
and private colleges without any monitoring done by the department. CACR visited both the
schools and will be taking up this issue soon with the authorities.
In another endeavor to implement the RTE clause of separate toilet for Boys and Girls, CACR will
be following up to get separate toilets made in Marol Police Camp school. Since the school is in
rented premises that are owned by the Police Department, we need to get permission from the
department for construction of the new toilets. K-East’s AO “Mrs. Rao” will be coordinating with
CACR in this aspect.
On April 17th, CACR took parents from Varun International School to meet the DMC and
Education Officer. They explained the illegality going on in the school in their own words and
demanded BMC to take over the school as soon as possible. On the same day, CACR members
also spoke to the EO about the imminent enrolment drive to admit students in BMC schools.
CACR has also made a few creative handbills to spread awareness on the issue and these were
also have a
On April 24th
, CACR was featured in ‘Empowering Times’ in the Standing Ovation’s
CACR team member, Dr.Richa, has been trying to design a heath and sanitation project for the
school children and parents covering basic self-hygiene, prevention from fever, malaria, dengue,
stomach infections, nutrition, mental agility, and stress management. We had met professors
from TISS-Tata Institute of Social Sciences to find out how we can synergize and shape this
project to spread awareness and prevention in schools.
To discuss about another collaboration opportunity we met with ORF – Observer Research
Foundation member Aparna Shivakumar. The possibility to work together for a think-tank to
influence educational practices and policies was discussed. Last month, CACR member Dr.Richa
was a panelist in the ORF conference for ‘Innovation and Best Educational Practices in
Like any organization or government, a Non-Profit (Ngo) too needs funds to function effectively.
As you have read above, CACR too has a host of important projects lined up that will benefit the
school students and we are in need of funds to implement and execute these projects – Student
Enrolment drive, Computer training for teachers, Healthcare awareness, etc. So request all of you
to DONATE to Citizens Association for Child rights –CACR to make these projects a reality. Any
amount, BIG or small, counts to make a difference.
Hope you liked the Newsletter
spread of this month.
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Volunteer Speak --The Enactus HR connection
Saachi Jain Jaiswal, Director of Enactus H.R College of Commerce and Economics and also our
esteemed volunteer shares her accounts of implementing the Computer literacy program in BMC
Collaboration of CACR with Enactus H.R College provided a new experience not only for me but
for the students’ as well. Working in the D.N Nagar municipal school and teaching children
of 6th and 7th standard computer literacy was an enriching experience.
To see them understand and comprehend what was being taught, to empower
them with computer literacy so that they could better their future and the feeling
of self satisfaction for investing energy and time trying to make it happen
was truly gratifying.
A wonderful experience and a step towards an educated India!
Computer Literacy is really important in today’s world. Before we could go and teach these
students, we attended a session to understand the entire process of executing this program in
schools. This session happened in the premises of my college and was truly enriching and fun. I
was enthusiastic enough to go right ahead and teach these students.
The first day was surprising because my assumption was proven wrong as a lot of the students
knew about power point /excel. But when it came to executing and working on the computers,
they hesitated as their practical experience was limited. They weren’t sure which keys were used
for what purpose.
I conducted the training, three days in a row in the DN Nagar Municipal School.
We started off with the basics of computers; for example the start button, the keyboard, desktop,
and so on. The students took keen interest and wrote down notes as we continued further into the
class. We also conducted a small quiz wherein the students were awarded chocolates for correct
answers. We tried to make the session as interesting as possible.
I am proud to be
a part of such
an initiative and
hope to continue
Partners Speak Sensitization Program for Principals of BMC
ADAPT in collaboration with CACR (Citizen’s Association for Child Rights) conducted
Sensitization and Awareness Program for 1250 Principals and 125 Beat Officers of BMC. The
program was conducted at the BMC Education office, Dadar over three days with two batches of
three hours daily. Each batch was attended by 250 participants.
The content included Introduction to Inclusion, Inclusion and Social model, Experiencing
Disability, Preparation for Inclusion and Simple classroom strategies for inclusion and
Concessions for Children with disabilities. The sessions were interactive where a lot of
personal experiences were shared. The principals asked queries about CWD in their schools.
Film ‘Mil Jul ke’ was also screened during the program. The participants were given handbooks
on Inclusion in Marathi. Pre and post questionnaires were filled by the participants.
The program was well appreciated by the principals. Some of them personally came and
expressed that the program has created awareness and changed their attitude towards persons
and students with disabilities.
So What’s New?
CACR featured in EMPOWERING TIMES-STANDING OVATION section
Students benefited from CLP CROSS 1300 MARK in 2013-14
Approx. 1000 students for Spoken English Project in 2013-14
In The Pipeline
Collaboration with TISS
Collaboration with Childline
Collaboration with Nalanda Nritya Kala Mahavidyalaya
CACR Project Report 2013-14
CACR on five Social Media platforms –Connect now for latest Project updates
CACR invited to Rotary club to collaborate on HAPPY SCHOOLS PROJECT
STRUGGLING TO FIND THE MID-DAY MEAL GR? SMC INFORMATION? RTE Act?
Don’t worry, CACR has them list on its WEBSITE’S HOME PAGE
CACR wants to HIRE Interns/ Part-time assistants. DO YOU KNOW SOMEONE FOR
CACR EDITORIAL TEAM
www.ngocacr.com Citizen Association of Child Rights
NOT FOR PROFIT; ALL FOR CHILDREN
1, Prabhav Society,
2nd Road, TPS III,
Mr.Nitin Wadhwani 91-09987598509
For more: click here
Mr. Nitin R Wadhwani (Founder & Director)
Nitin is a Science graduate from Mumbai, with a
Diploma in Radio Electronics. He has Anchored
Mumbaiites for Child Rights (M4CR), a CRY
initiative, for almost 5 years, before proceeding to
establish CACR, a NGO registered as a Section
25, Not for Profit Company.
From time to time he keeps on interacting with concerned
authorities in the Education Department for overall improvement in
functioning and quality education in Government Schools for
Nitin Says: I strongly believe in creating awareness and in citizens’
participation on child rights issues with focus on ensuring free, quality
and compulsory education for all children.
Mrs. Vidya Vaidya (Director)
Vidya is an Artist and Social activist. She is an
Alumnus of the Sir J.J. School of Fine Art, Mumbai
and has had a number of exhibitions in Mumbai and
She is the Trustee and Hon. Secretary of the 'H (W) Ward Citizens'
Federation' and the 'Gen. A. K. Vaidya Nagar Rahivasi Sangh' of
VidyaSays: Public involvement and child rights advocacy can aid to
improve the quality of education in schools
Mr. Deepak Wadhwani (Director)
Deepak is a Commerce Graduate and a
businessman in the trading industry. He hails
from Amil Community (Hyderabad Sind).
He has been associated with NGO’s and ALMS’s such as AGNI
and ALMANAC contribute to various civic social issues for the
past 3 years and also has worked earlier as a CRY volunteer.
DeepakSays: Having met like-minded volunteers, now with Citizens
Association for Child Rights, I want to ensure improved functioning
and quality of education in BMC schools.
Dr. Richa Singh (Head– Projects &
From early days Richa (Bachelors in Dental
Surgery) was keen to volunteer and make a
difference in the fields of education and health
care. She has also obtained a professional
diploma in management from Thadomal
Shahani trust, Mumbai and holds a certificate
in Management Principles from ILM, UK.
RichaSays: CACR is a citizens’ movement to reclaim our
government schools that are fast vanishing due to decrease in
student enrolment and a decline in quality of education."