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13 June 2008     Vadodra, Gujarat

Aarti lives in Gujarat with her family. Aarti and her family are Sikligar Sikhs, who have a rich history of polishing and manufacturing swords as well as other weapons during Guru Gobind Singh Ji’s time. They are now a marginalized group in India, with most people working in hard labour. Unfortunately, Aarti’s father is in poor condition and his health prevents him from working as much as the other men in their community. Aarti’s parents do not want their poverty to limit the opportunities for their children, but they are worried this will be impossible without a proper education.

Aarti is from a Sikligar community in Gujarat that has a very high dropout rate among the children. Most of the children attend a government school that does not charge any fees, but also provides a very low quality education. There is no accountability for teachers or students, and absenteeism is prevalent. As a result, by the time the children reach high school and are made to write exams, they usually fail and dropout of school for good. The boys find whatever work they can and the girls are usually married off at 15 or 16 years old. SAF CANADA will be taking on the responsibility of educating Aarti and other children from this area. They will begin attending a private school with a much higher quality education. Furthermore, since many students are behind in their learning due to attending the government school for so many years, we will also be opening up a Tution Centre (after-school tutoring centre) in Gujarat. If you sponsor Aarti today, you will be supporting SAF CANADA’s efforts to address some of the root causes of poor education and poverty in India. Sponsor Aarti today and ensure that her future and the future of her entire community is much brighter than their present circumstances.

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