By Mirza Hassan
Sost –Gircha, Hunza:
March 16th 2017, from the office of Khunjerab Villagers Organization (KVO) Sost-Gircha
The KVO., project staff and the management team organized the Project Launching workshop at the Dream Land Hotel, Sost-Gircha on 16th March 2017. Whereat all the school head teachers; PTA/VEC members, local NGOs; civil society organizations; village NUMBERDARS; education department and all stakeholders were invited as a participants and more than 100 stakeholders and invitees were present.
Mr.Raza Mohammad explained about the project’s importance and role of KVO and the project funding agency USAID the implementing organizations NRSP and SGAFP. He elaborated in detail as bellow: that The US Government has extended the Ambassador’s Small Grants Program (SGAFP) through the NRSP and SGAFP directly to the Khunjerab Villagers Organization (KVO) for the capacity building of students, teachers, PTAs/VECs and the village communities against disaster awareness and preparedness in all the 46 schools of Tehsil Gojal in District Hunza.
He further went in depth about the agreement and said that, this is a unique and the first prototype multilateral partnership agreement by the NRSP and SGAFP with the effective and indigenous community based origination, KVO, that has been working, since 1975, on quality education, health care, conservation, wild life; natural resources management; agriculture, women empowerment; poverty alleviation; infrastructure development; mobilization of local resources, as well as capacity building of the communities; micro-financing; technical skills enhancement trainings. Education, safety and capacity building has been at the top of KVO’s priority agenda. It reflects the US government mission to deliver quality education and empower the community stand on their own feet and start working with confidence on the surface of the earth.
Mr. Mirza Hassan presented, on power point presentation the project plans, objecives and activities and explained that, the Khunjerab Villagers Organization (KVO)has placed education and health at the top of it’s priorities. Under the eight months project time frame – from 10th January to 10th September 2017. The project staff had already conducted baseline survey of 46 schools and has collected important fact base data. The KVO project staff will deliver capacity building training for 200 teachers, conduct orientation sessions and mock drills for students in 46 schools; organize consultative meeting with the stakeholders; establish 46 student clubs; orientation sessions for 400 PTA/VEC member; 92 one day sessions for the communities; prepare sustainability plan; and disaster preparedness plans for 46 schools. A consolidative report will be developed and shared with all the stakeholders, local NGOs in district Hunza. The same report will be submitted to the NRSP and SGAFP and meaningful engagement of the stakeholders will be ensured.
All the project activates will be performed under the close monitoring, guidelines and project compliance of the USAID, NRSP and SGA FP.
The was of the opening about the importance of the project supported by the USAID through the SGAFP and NRSP to this disaster prone area of Gojal Schools, by saying that this project will raise and build capacities of 46 schools enrolling 3973 students, 385, teachers, 400 PTAs/VECs on the one hand and on the other it will develop an effective workforce by sharpening their skill edges and prepare them for trying to save lives and properties of 21298 during risk days and hours in the coming years.
After the briefing Mr. Shafi Ullah Baig and Mohbat Karim – the project representatives, paid tribute to the USAID, NRSP and SGAFP for the trust, support and guidance extended to the KVO project.
This project is one of the great Mission of the USAID to impart knowledge and training in order to strengthen the grass roots levels schools students, teachers and communities to save precious lives during the occurrence of any disaster at the schools and at home where children and community live.
At the 100 participants gathering 24 intellectual delivered brief but meaningful speeches and shared their ideas, comprising head teachers; local NGOs heads; PTA & VEC committee leaders.
Question and answer session was also held in which majority school head teachers took part and raised questions. The project team coordinator answered the questions. All the head teachers, PTA and village Education Committee, local NGOs, the village NUMBERDARS, Government., education department and presidents of the councils were present on the occasion. Majority of the participant shared their ideas and important suggestions were grown to prepare disaster risk plans for the schools and communities.
All the speakers, the teachers, parents appreciated KVO’s efforts and paid tributes to the USAID’s support for such an important project in this disaster prone area, and they all were with the common opinion that all stakeholders must be on a single platform in order to forge the common energies and forces as well as resources for preparing over selves to manage the potential risks for the children, teachers and communities at large.
The important point and conclusive remark was from the President Ismaili Council Gulmit who is also the head teacher of Al-Ameen Model High School Gulmit. After appreciating KVO, and thanking the US Government for funding the project he said that only taking awareness, trainings and knowhow about the disaster will not work until all the schools are equally equipped, provided with tools and emergency kits on and for a sustainable ground.