Project Overview

CDF - Integrated Education Movement

The objective of this project is to lay the foundation of education in the community and to develop a scalable model that can create a self sustaining large scale literacy program.

  • Implementing NGO: Community Development Foundation (CDF)
  • Location: Sedam Block, Gulbarga District, Karnataka
  • Target Area: 56 Villages covering 206 Pre-schools & Schools
  • Target Area Population: -
  • Number of Beneficiaries (Current Year): 32,951 [31,871 Children, 1,080 Adults]
  • Start Year // End Year: 2008 // TBD
  • Funding Plan (Current Year): $44,485 [2013/14]
  • Past Funding (Total): $170,000+

Region Demographics

Gulbarga is one of the bottom five districts in terms of literacy and income index in the state of Karnataka, and has an appalling 45,000 children out of school. At the start of this project, socio-economic scene in Sedam was grim: 5,000 children out of school, 40% attendance in schools, only 5 to 10% of girls completing high school, poor enrollment in child care centers, and prevalent child labor (3%) with children being made to work in cotton fields. 45% schools had no power, 56% schools had no libraries, 81% of schools had no play areas. 20% of families did not speak the local language, child marriages were common, people were unaware of Government support programs, and there was no community ownership of schools/education.

On the positive side, 90% of children stay in school once they reach class 9 and 10! The Department of Education is very supportive of developmental efforts from NGOs in the region. The Sarva Shiksha Abhiyaan (Education for All) program is alive and well in Gulbarga district. The target region for our intervention had similar conditions as the entire Sedam block.  

Area Overall Literacy Male Literacy Female Literacy
Karnataka State 67% 76% 57%
Gulbarga District 50% 62% 38%
Sedam Block (Target Area)




Table: Literacy Rates [2001 Census]



Project Coverage Data

Gram Panchayats11
ICDS Centers124
Community Based Organizations412

 Long Term Project Goals: The long-term goal of this project is to enable children to be in a school environment thereby avoiding the child labor and child marriage issues. Every single child will be enrolled in school and tracked to ensure retention, and all efforts will be made to educate every child in the target area.Every year we draw up an action plan of activities to be accomplished during the year to help achieve the long term goals of the project.

Current Year Project Goals: Program activities will be executed under four categories:

  1. Bring out-of-school children and school drop-outs back to school
  2. Improve and tracking enrollment and attendance rates in the public schools
  3. Train teachers to provide quality education
  4. Create awareness that leads to active involvement of the community in monitoring & improving their schools.




Early Childcare and Pre-School Education 

Improve functioning of the pre-schools and childcare centers

  •  Collect and develop learning materials for pre-school education.  
  • Train all the pre-school teachers/workers on the educational materials. 

Improve functioning of pre-school monitoring committees (comprising of the mothers)

  •  Training committee members on the functioning of pre-schools. 
  • Create Awareness of roles and responsibilities for the committee members


Increase enrollment and retention of children in schools

  •  Organize enrollment campaigns in all the villages
  • Create awareness about enrolling children in schools amongst parents through processions, home visits and special parents meetings

Improve learning levels of children in schools

  •  Set up reading rooms in schools and provide access to books for the children. 
  • Monitor and guide the children and teachers to manage the reading rooms

Community Empowerment

Increase community support and involvement in children’s education

  •  Create an integrated development program in 12 schools to bring parents and teachers in to a participative approach for monitoring progress in learning levels
  • Create Child Rights Clubs (CRC) in schools to provide a platform for children to understand their rights and address issues that affect them.

NGO Partner Staff Training

  • Provide specialized training to NGO staff on educational materials, communication skills, community interactions, and expert sessions with examples of successful projects.

Quantitative Targets

Qualitative Outcomes

Transformative Impact

Early Childcare and Pre-schools

·  Provide learning materials and teacher’s training in 75 preschools

·  Train 150 pre-school monitoring committee members (mothers)

·  Children will engage in learning from an early age, which will trigger their future interest in school.

·  Mothers will play an active role to ensure a sustainable change

Pre-emptive strike at Child labor because an experience has shown that early start ensures nearly 100% transition into primary schools


·  Bring 1,500 children back to school

·  Institute 25 libraries in 25 schools to cover around 2,500 children.

·  The community voice becomes increasingly prominent to ensure that children stay in school

·  Reading, writing and story telling will pique the child’s interest and also provide high quality education

Children do what comes naturally to them – learn and grow! The education opens up new world of opportunities and they can not only dream but dare to reach for it.


Community Empowerment & NGO Staff Training

·  Operate 12 community owned model schools.

·  Train 50 School Monitoring Committees with 250 members

·  Operate 45 Child Right Clubs effectively covering 1,125 children

·  Train NGO staff on multiple facets of successful project execution

·  Parents and teachers start working as partners to make schools better

·  Parents learn to influence their children’s school

·  Children become aware of their rights and develop leadership skills

·  NGO improves operational and financial execution.

The experience and the skills will make the adults and children proactive and empowered members of their community. The community is self-sustaining as they define their goals and know how to attain them.

Success is when ILP is no longer needed!

About our Partner NGO

  • Community Development Foundation (CDF) was registered as an NGO in India in 2002.
  • CDF has the experience of implementing a number of projects like Free a Child for Education (FACE) in Gulbarga District covering 29 villages and ~2000 children, Tsunami Rehabilitation Program in Tamil Naduproviding livelihood support for 671 families, and building schools benefiting ~5000 children in TamilNadu.
  • CDF has also setup resource centers in various areas to collaborate and coordinate with NGOs, and designed school education programs, operational procedures for bridge centers for International Labor Organization (ILO).
  • The chief functionary of CDF, Dr Mahendra Rajaram, holds a doctorate in social work with 11 years of related work experience. He has been the UNICEF coordinator for Gulbarga for the last few years. He was a program coordinator for a pilot project "Elimination of Child Labor in Gulbarga Block" (a joint program of the Government of Karnataka and UNICEF-NORAD). He facilitated the formation of Andhra Pradesh Alliance for Child Rights, which is leading the education campaign and child rights issues in collaboration with 400 NGOs and activists.
  • The CDF program coordinator for our project in Sedum is Mr. Arun Serrao. Arun Serrao is a social worker with 20 years of grassroots experience in various areas. He has reviewed the National Child Labor Project Centers (NCLP) in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh. He introduced training and monitoring of the ‘Child Track System’ (CTS), to monitor children’s progress in the NCLP centers. He also conducted training for grass root workers, Self Help Group leaders, Panchayat and School Developing and Monitoring Committee members.

Financial Summary




2010-11 (29 Villages)

11,888 Children



27,176 Children


2013-14 (56 villages)

32,951 [31,871 Children, 1,080 Adults]


Detailed Budget - 2013/14

ActivityBudget Amount (USD)

Early Childcare and Pre-School Education

- Learning materials to pre-schools
- Pre School Staff Training & exposure visit
- Training the Trainers
- Training pre-school committee (BVS)
-Trainer’s salary and travel


- Para-teacher salary
- Set up Reading rooms in schools
Community empowerment
- Child Right’s club activation and support
- Set up Integrated development program
- SDMC training
-Parent-teacher meetings

NGO staff

- Salary and travel expenses of
--Chief functionary,
--Program coordinator,
--6 community organizers


- Salary of Accountant and Data entry operator
- Staff benefits
- Rent, utilities


1. Community is aware about child rights and importance of the education. 

2 Overall the enrollment and retention in the working area has been  increased. (Enrollment up to 98% and retention up to 80%)

3. 65% Parents   question school authorities/teachers, ICDS workers about the functioning of schools, ICDS centers  and enquire about the educational  progress of the children.

4.BVS and mother meetings become regular in majority ICDS centre and ensures the supplementary food distribution.  As a result the attendance in the centers has increased up to  80%.

5.Youth and women groups in villages take part in school and ICDS related meetings and work  towards enrollment and retention of the school children.

6.Grama Panchayat members  visit  the ICDS centers, schools and monitoring the functioning.

7.  Child rights club members aware about their rights.  violations  of their rights would  be reported to the concerned committees and Grama panchayats.

8. Children older than 6 who attended ICDS centers earlier are very much regular to school.

9. Most of the adolescent  girls oppose the practice of child marriage.  These girls convince their parents to continue   the education of their younger siblings.

10.The line departments in Sedam quite supportive for CDF initiatives. They extend  cooperation and support  by directing their lower staff for effective  implementation of the children related programs.

Achievements in 2011:

  • In an area where preschool functioning was not the order of the day, IEM operates in 65 ICDS centers and directly through the services of our Balasevikas in 31 centers. The Anganwadis have become functional, government collaboration in this aspect has been excellent and 70% of attendance (1714 of 2454 children) is achieved.

 ·   318 irregular students are followed-up for not dropping out from schools, 170 are given remedial teaching, and 280 children in Std V to VII are subjected to quality assessments.

 ·   9 Para teachers are appointed through the project in 8 Lower Higher Primary Schools covering 2334 children.

 ·  4 Para teachers are appointed in 4 Government High schools to cover 810 students for various services including group counseling, life skills, language and other inputs.

 ·  30 Self Help Group’s with 889 members are functioning, they work on their savings and credit, help monitoring children going to anganwadis and schools, enable adolescent girls getting vocational skills etc.,

 ·   Activating Gram panchayats, SHGs, Mothers’ committee, School Management committees, Bala vikas Samithis are part of community awareness and empowerment strategies. 



  • Activated 24 pre-school centers to enable a 50% increase in attendance
  • Distributed Play & Learning materials to 19 pre-schools
  • Trained 13 pre-school teachers to take care of 480 children
  • Trained 36 pre-school teachers / workers for 9 training days
  • Conducted 3-day children’s camps for 324 children in 6 villages
  • Celebrated Independent/republic/children’s days in schools
  • Enrolled 25 non-school going children in a bridge program
  • Provided non-formal education for 89 drop-out children
  • Conducted remedial classes for 170 school going children in 5 villages
  • Trained 85 teachers on child protection
  • Community awareness to nearly 8,000 via street plays, meetings etc
  • Activated 48 women’s Self Help Groups (SHGs) covering 406 members in 10 villages
  • Trained 361 members of pre-school and school monitoring committees on how to monitor their community’s schools.
  • Enabled 264 women to participate in anti Child-Labor programs
  • Formed Child Rights Clubs in 13 schools (248 children)
  • Participated in 3 state-supported grievance-hearing programs at the local level
  •  A Transforming Village [Year: 2012]: This is a compelling success story that explains why it takes much more than just giving books, pens and school uniforms to bring lasting change in schools and communities: Mustalli is a small, remote village where CDF has been working since 2008. When the CDF team member started visiting the village, a number of problems were reported. Lack of leadership and disagreements amongst growing sub-groups were impeding better education for the children. So, CDF began to interact with the village leaders, community members and parents to address the children’s problems amicably. One major issue faced by the children was lack of space since the school was situated between the residential area and a temple. So, it was not possible to add classrooms to grow beyond 5th grade. Even though Government funds were available, the school was struggling to find a place for construction. The school also did not have a playground. Interestingly, the school had previously constructed one classroom 30 yards away from the main building, but the land in the middle belonged to a women’s group that was totally opposed to allow the children use their land for school activities. They even put up a fence to prevent this! CDF team took up this issue and initiated a discussion with the village leaders, School Development and Management Committee, and the teachers. CDF team then visited the women’s group separately to convince the members of their role as parents in improving the school, explained about child rights and the benefits their children would gain through a better school. Half of the members were convinced, while others continued the stalemate. After a number of such frequent meetings with the opposing group, they were finally convinced. Misunderstandings between the School Headmaster and the women’s group members were also sorted out in the process. CDF team facilitated a discussion between all the parties and finally an agreement was drafted and signed. The fence was removed, a wall built around the school, and the land leveled to be usable for children’s activities. After seeing this development, two people who owned land adjacent to the school agreed to give their land for construction of classrooms. Four rooms have been constructed and the school got upgraded to 7th Grade! CDF opened a spacious reading room in the school; relationship between teachers and the community has also improved, and a Child Rights Club (CRC) was formed in the school by CDF with the help of the teachers. Teachers were provided knowledge and exposure on child rights. The CRC members took part in a special village level meeting and raised several questions related to their school. One of the issues was less quantity of midday meal being served in their school. The village leaders listened to the children and tackled the issue by warning the cook and the teachers.
  • A Child Rights Club in Action [Year: 2012]: It is hard to believe that Child Rights Clubs in schools achieve much in India, especially if they are in remote villages. This is a courageous story of the children in Vimudapur village who proved otherwise: In August 2012, the Higher Primary School in Vimudapur village had 292 children and 5 teachers. As a part of our project, CDF and ILP formed a Child Rights Club (CRC) in this school. Slowly but steadily, the CRC became more active and enthusiastically organized various programs. This year, they decided to do something to improve the quality of the midday meal served in the school. The curries were served in low quantity lacking in of dhal (lentils) and vegetables, and the sambar (lentil soup) was too watery. They had brought this issue to the notice of the School Head Mistress (HM) and protested mildly, but she took no action. So, in a CRC meeting the children decided to protest in a stronger way, and motivated other children to boycott the meal. The HM tried to pacify them by repeatedly promising that she would set it right from the next day. The children did not believe her as she had done this several times already. Instead they asked her to eat the food first and then they would follow! The HM threatened the children of dire consequences if they did not take their meals. Instead, the children threw their meal on the road and continued their protest. On next day too, the HM provided the same kind of food and forced the children to eat or face consequences. She called a few children to her office and threatened them. The children informed their parents about what was happening in their school. They brought the issue to the notice of School Monitoring Committee, Gram Panchayat members and the village leaders. The children locked the school kitchen and gathered in the school veranda and started shouting slogans like beke beku! Nyaya Beku (We want Justice)! As the issue was gathering heat, various Government and Village leaders arrived at the school and conducted a meeting where the children explained what was happening. The officials ordered the HM to maintain the quality of food failing action would be taken against her. The quality of mid day meal improved immediately and stayed that way! Children were very happy about it, and the village community appreciated the role children played to set their issue right. The schoolteachers – who were opposing the attitude of the HM and had helped the children express their unhappiness openly – were also very happy about this development. The CRC of Vimudapur school set an example for others to emulate!.
  • Seeds of Change: Girls Leading the Way [Year: 2012]: Few stories can better express the spirit of what we mean by “Integrated Education Movement” than this fascinating journey of 25 girls in Vimudapur village: North East Karnataka is infamous for high child labour, child marriages, migration of families, and low female literacy with large number of girls dropping out of school, and 50% of girls never getting into high school. In 2008, CDF and ILP started working on the Integrated Education Movement project in such villages in Sedam. Apart from working in schools and community, CDF had started organizing non-school going girls into groups and motivated them to take up non-formal education classes. However, the girls were keener to take up some skill-based training to make an earning, versus pursuing an education. CDF decided to adapt and started the vocational training program in tailoring. They identified and paid an instructor from the village, found a place for conducting the training, purchased the sewing machines, offered repair cost and maintenance of the machines, and provided materials for the training course. Such centers were eventually opened in more villages and received very positive in majority villages. One such village was Vimudapur - where 25 girls underwent such training. Initially the village leaders were not in favor of this activity, and parents were reluctant to support it. But the instructor and the girls stood firm and united, and continued the training for the next 6 months. Besides learning the sewing skills, the girls were also encouraged to read small storybooks and life stories of Indian women achievers. They girls were also encouraged to participate in games; they went on a picnic to Gulbarga with their own money (and partial support from CDF); all girls participated in a village level fair wherein they presented dance & songs, and participated in sports events and won many prizes. CDF also provided them training on child rights. Personality development and other life-based skills were also imparted through the duration of the training program. As the group continued their learning, some of the parents realized their children’s potential and purchased sewing machines for them. This group’s achievement was a live example for other girls who saw them in action. The icing on the cake was when this group of girls had stitched all the uniforms for the school going children in Vimudapur village and earned about Rs. 14,000 [~$300] in June/July, 2012. In a short span of time, these girls proved that if the right avenues are provided, they can stand up and be counted to make a difference in their own lives, and set an example for others to do the same. ILP and CDF are happy to be facilitating such a transformation.