Essar Foundation has been associated with schools and communities in Gujarat in facilitating the Shala Pravesh Utsav / Kanya Kelavani Abhiyan (school enrolment drive, especially relating to the girl child) over the past eight years. The Gujarat government launched the initiative in 2003 to increase school enrolment and also reduce the number of dropouts.
The initiative aims to encourage children (especially girls) to attain primary education and bring down the rate of primary school dropouts. Essar believes in every child's right to education and promotes education as being an enabler in building a self-confident and empowered life.
Ensuring no child remains out of school is one of the most important objectives of Essar Foundation's initiatives with communities.
The unique annual program is conducted at primary schools across all 18,000-plus villages in the state. During the enrolment time, the schools are decked up to bear a festive look to attract children. The newly enrolled children are welcomed with a lot of gaiety and are given new study materials to encourage them to attend school regularly.
A large part of the Essar Foundation's activities are focused on the development of villages in India. Its activities, divided across six focus areas — livelihoods and entrepreneurship, women empowerment, health, education, infrastructure and environment — are based on the principles of good governance and equity. The Foundation fosters collaborative relationships with local administration, civil society organizations and community based institutions as part of its fundamental strategy towards sustainable development.
This year during the enrolment phase in June 2013, the Foundation contributed to the utsav with distribution of more than 1,200 school kits across 40 schools in 24 villages in the talukas of Lalpur and Khambhaliya in Gujarat.
The event was celebrated in the surrounding villages of Essar Refinery, Power Plant and Ports, from June 13 to 15. Senior government officials from different departments graced the occasion, and senior executives from Essar Oil, Power and Ports were also present.
Team Hazira, Essar Foundation also initiated a similar drive at schools in Hazira on June 14. The team endeavored relentlessly to motivate parents towards enrolling their children and sending them regularly to schools, and encouraged children to attend school regularly.
A colorful program was organized by Team Hazira, Essar Foundation at the premises of Hazira Primary School inviting parents, teachers, and children of schools as well as of anganwadis. All new entrants were smartly sporting head bands designed for the occasion. Team Essar Foundation distributed 650 school bags and school kits among the students of five anganwadis and four primary schools here.Earlier, in September 2012, Essar Foundation distributed school kits to 535 children who were newly enrolled at five schools in Salaya as part of the Shala Pravesh Utsav.