Every Shepherd a Scholar, every Scholar a Shepherd
At Bakarwal Mobile Schools (BMS) we believe that all children, including those from nomadic families, have the right to a quality and relevant education. In 2007 BMS became aware of the need for appropriate schooling opportunities for nomadic Bakarwal children in Northern Pakistan. In order to address this need, BMS established a mobile schooling system using a shepherd-specific, mother-tongue curriculum.
Drawing on the knowledge and traditions of this community, nearly 400 children in 30 Bakarwal villages and camps are learning how to read and write in their own language, Gojri (Gujari), with transitional classes to the national language, Urdu. This multi-lingual approach to education ensures that the children understand the teacher's instruction, value their own language.
Traditional schools and school buildings are of little use to these migrating families. Adapting to their unique circumstances, BMS adopted a model which equips men and women, themselves nomads, with the skills teach their own children. By receiving teacher training and school materials this community is able provide their own children with an education without interruption to their traditional way of life.
By including applicable health training to the curriculum, we believe this program will result in a reduction of poverty and hunger, reduced maternal and child mortality ratios, increased capacity to participate in democracy, increased gender equality and empowerment of women, preservation of a threatened indigenous language and culture along with increased capacity for self-advocacy, and, above all, improved opportunity for boys and girls alike to complete a full course of primary schooling.
To learn more about this project visit our website or send us an email.