Shiksha SopanShiksha means Education and Sopan means steps or stairs. Education is the step that leads a person ahead for the social upliftment. This was the thought behind starting this organization by four students of IIT Kanpur in 2001. People who join this course have high aspirations and strive hard to achieve their goals to establish themselves in life. But these students thought in a different way and wanted to take care of the underprivileged children of the society and make it a part of their dream. As a part of achieving their goal first they wanted to educate those children who belonged to the servant quarters of the campus. That’s how Shiksha Sopan came into existence. Understanding their noble thought other students, faculty members and the other employees of IIT Kanpur joined hands with them. Later local young enthusiastic youth also joined this mission.
It’s now a registered non-governmental organization which imparts meaningful education to the under developed sections of the society which are in and around IIT Kanpur, making the students self confident, dependent and socially conscious beings. Shiksha Sopan focuses on three objective i.e., Shiksha, Sanskar and Swavlamban.
It is responsible for making socially sensitive and responsible citizens. Shiksh Sopan imparts education to students through innovative pedagogic methods. Audio and visual aids, demonstrations, activities, tours, lab activities and games form a part of this system.
Inculcation of right attitudes and values, character building, respect for humanity and mother land are being given lot of importance and kept in mind while educating the students.
Shiksha Sopan also gives equal importance to professional training. This helps the students to acquire expertise in activities like tailoring, carpentry and handicrafts. Once the students finish the basic education they will be able to earn their livelihood on their own. This also reduces the unemployment problem drastically.
At present Shiksha Sopan runs a few centres like Sopan Vidyalaya, Evening Learning Centres at Ratanpur and Barasirohi and a Science Laboratory.
At evening centres, children assemble to hone their skills in painting, drawing and model making. Children are taken to excursions once in a year. This gives them lot of exposure and helps them to experience the outside world. Shiksha Sopan also organizes various cultural programs to bring out the innate talents of children. Various programs are conducted on the occasions such as Vivekananda Jayanti, Independence Day, Republic Day and Children’s Day.
Shiksh Sopan has many more future plans that benefit the underprivileged community. Some of them include: to give priority to sports and yoga, to enrich the nutrition programs, to expand vocational training section by hiring experts from various fields, to enrich the libraries and labs at all centres, to eradicate social evils such as superstitions, dowry, discrimination against the girl child, liquor and gutka usage, etc.
The basic support for Shiksha Sopan is IIT Kanpur. Donations are also being accepted from organizations and well wishers. Donations can be made in the form of cash, cheques and demand drafts drawn in favour of Shiksha Sopan, IIT, Kanpur. The donations are used for schemes like Community Library; Higher Education Cell; VNK Merit Scholarship; Creating e-Resource; Pratibha Poshan Yojana Senior; Sopan Anaupacharik Shikshan Kendra; Evening Learning Centers and Sopan Science Cell.
Shiksha Sopan’s achievements have been tremendous in all these years. It has given an opportunity to the students of Kanpur to serve the downtrodden. This project has proven that the so called urban elite society is really concerned and bothered about the villages and villagers and that they actually contribute their share efficiently to bring them par with the better class.