Dubai school kids help family of jobless father
Dubai - 2017 being declared 'Year of Giving' was an added impetus for the school's initiative.
By Ashwani Kumar
Published: Tue 28 Feb 2017, 4:28 PM
Last updated: Wed 1 Mar 2017, 2:17 AM
A Dubai school has stepped in to spread the light of education into the lives of three children from Abu Dhabi who have missed schooling as their father couldn't afford it.
Nirad (10 years), Lalesha (13) and Akshad (4) have missed out on years of education as their father, Shakeer was jobless for more than a year.
It was following Khaleej Times report 'These 3 kids want to go to school, but can't' that GEMS New Millennium School in Al Khail decided to make contributions.
The school said the gift of education from the privileged who 'enjoy technology savvy learning environments' to fund the schooling of three children was the inspiration behind the initiative.
On the International Mother Language Day on February 21, the school marked the Mufti Day with students wearing their traditional attire ready for some fun and helping the Abu Dhabi family. At the end, students from kindergarten to Grade ninth, including staff contributed a total of Dh10,000.
Also, 2017 being declared 'Year of Giving' was an added impetus for the school's initiative.
Student Council Member Ananya Suresh said that 'giving' is defined to make all cherish with positivity and goodness at every step of life.
"Giving is always not related to donations; rather it reflects the difference in a person, in you, in a society or in a nation like 'ours'. Our goal for 2017 is to make a difference in the lives for who we care and in ourselves. The year 2017 should be a 'legacy'. We celebrated International Mother Language Day with a twist by reaching out to the community to embark the 'Year of Giving'. Principal Fatima Martin is the soul of inspiration for us."
The Wellbeing Champions and the Environment Ambassadors under the guidance of Community Outreach Programme Coordinator Jobi Phillip led the fund raising drive.
The programme is the intrinsic DNA of the school system through which many activities are held intended to develop the social skill, empathy and social responsibilities in learners.
A student, Benny Jacob, summed up nicely the ethos of the school.
"When we get hi-tech education in our school, there are children deprived of education and other luxuries of life, denying education to anyone is a crime to the society. So we decided to act on it."
They are soon expected to meet their new 'friends' in Abu Dhabi.
Family overwhelmed by Dubai GEMS
Ever since Khaleej Times report was published on February 4, help has been pouring in for Shakeer and family. He has been offered a job by local company, assured assistance by well-wishers in getting school admission for his three children and provided with provisions. It is, however, the gesture by GEMS New Millennium School, Al Khail, which has left this family in tears.
The Dubai school has raised Dh10,000 to be handed over to Shakeer and family.
When told about such an initiative taken by school, all family members were stunned with emotions seeping out. "This is a magnanimous move. Those students and school will always be in our prayers. It is such institutions that help keep our faith and hope alive. They understood our pain and it will help pay visa fine of my children," Shakeer said from his newly shifted accommodation, which is cheaper than previous one.
The children too are elated with the developments.
"I may soon be able to return to school," 10-year-old Nirad said. He hasn't crossed KG1 and now many well-wishers have come forward to provide support with school admission.
His 13-year-old sister who stopped schooling in 2014 after Grade 3 is hopeful 'good days' will be back in their lives. "I want my brother Akshad to have normal schooling life. He is four-and-a-half years now," Lalesha said.
Their mother Fathuma Farsana said the contribution made by school is heartening and one with 'double impact' coming from an education institution.
The family members thanked GEMS New Millennium School and all other supporters, especially Khaleej Times for helping them in their rainy days.