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From Debris to Dreams: Asif’s Story of Education Rekindled

Shaagird Foundation

They … they did not even allow me to take my books… I could not even see them for the last time…” says Asif, with teary eyes and a painful heart.

Asif was a student of Behrul Uloom Madrasa, Akhunji, for centuries. what stood as a testament to history was ruthlessly ravaged within a mere hour. With the demolition, Asif lost his only passion, his studies, and his education in just the blink of an eye.

His madrasa was his home, from playing cricket to clicking fingers on the Computer, solving tricky Math problems, exploring Hindi and learning English, he used to do all this under the roofs of his abode. Little did he know that his life would turn into debris and silent mourning.

In the wee hours of the day on January 30, the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) razed down his madrassa to the ground. His eyes, which once saw hope and life in the corridors of the beautiful building, were seeing debris and shattered dreams all over. 

His books, which were his best friends, were beneath the sand and mud, lying without their owners.

With a bag full of unaccomplished dreams and broken wings, he headed his way back to a life without lights. He was heartbroken and devastated until Miles2Smile, a Delhi-based NGO, intervened swiftly and paved his way. 

Miles2Smile, with the aim of weaving his feather in the seventh sky and mending his broken wings, provided him with the basic necessities that he lost to the demolition. 

Asif found solace in these necessities but longed for his books, his best friends. With the aim to fill this void in his heart, Shaagird Foundation, another Delhi-based NGO embarked on a journey to provide him with quality education. They sponsored his enrollment and education at Madrasa Kala Mahal, Mehrauli, where he has the best environment to concentrate and study again. 

At Kala Mahal, he grows and learns every day. He reads about unsung heroes and imagines himself as one of them. Along with his worldly education, he gets cognizant of his spiritual lessons as well. He learns the Quran and finds comfort in the words of the Almighty. 

Originally coming from a family where no one has seen the gates of school to taking motivation to study from his family, Asif has come a long way. His parents, who don’t know how to read and write, give him a daily dose of motivation. 

Asif’s hard work and dedication have made him the star performer of the class. This achievement is the collective effort of his entire family.

Shaagrid Foundation believes everyone deserves a quality education, regardless of life’s disruptions. Whether facing pandemics, natural disasters, or human conflict, they are here to bridge the gap.

With the assistance of Shaagird Foundation, Asif has successfully befriended his books yet again. He has mended the void that was in his heart due to demolition. 

Not only this, but his brother is also getting access to education with the assistance of Shaagird Foundation.

This is just the story of one Asif, there are millions of Asif who face these unfortunate horror episodes of life and yet dream to become A.P.J. Abdul Kalam. Shaagird Foundation wishes to educate them all and create a meaningful world where every child deserves to study, and where every child counts!

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© Shaagird is an education program. It aims to provide education to the most marginalized children in our society through sponsorship by collaborating with different schools and madrasas.