A Plan to Save Kashmiri
Students’ Academic Year
By Saghir Aslam
above: Scenes of devastation and hope
Saba Trust team has been concerned
about the last year studies of high school students in the
earthquake area. The Trust formed a committee a month ago
to come up with a plan so that the students did not miss
a whole year of school.
It was a huge task that came with great responsibilities
as most of the school buildings have been destroyed and
most of the staff has died or is seriously injured: the
teachers are not able to teach. The planning team presented
multiple plans of which one proposed setting up tent high
schools. Providing water, gas and electricity remained a
worrisome aspect of this plan.
Even if we could solve the utilities problem our next worry
was that since many local teachers were not available would
we be able to attract enough qualified teachers to teach
the students? Will the teachers be willing to teach in freezing
temperature? And even if we were able to find a skeleton
teaching staff we would still face another problem: where
would the teachers reside and how would they adjust to the
freezing temperature. The most important question was how
effectively the teachers would be able to teach.
Another important issue was that we had to come up with
a plan for the residence of the teachers. Naturally, the
same questions came up about electricity and other utilities.
Considering everything a tent high school did not look practical
or doable. The Saba Trust committee was asked to do more
work and to come up with a different plan.
The committee went to work again and had several meetings.
One day the committee decided to go and visit the facility
at our 53000 sq. ft Wisdom House in village Chanan 18 km
from the nearest town Kharian with a teaching staff of 143.
The committee thought it sounded a good proposal.
Director and founder of Wisdom House Br. Abdo Shakoor informed
the committee of our tremendous transportation network that
covers 35 plus km and nearly 70 villages. The committee
was informed that even if each village took only 5 students
there would be 350 lucky students.
We all know the great hospitality of the villagers. The
students will not be a burden on them. All the Kashmiri
students will be welcomed with open arms. Everyone would
want a student as a popular saying in these villages goes
“there is always room for one more.” The fact
of the matter is that the villagers would be honored to
have the students.
Once the committee came back to the Head Office of Saba
Trust in Rawalpini this plan was unanimously approved and
we immediately gave the working committee another task to
work out all the details about classrooms, teachers, hours,
The committee went back to Chanan and spent some time with
the staff and worked out all necessary details. They presented
a comprehensive plan that sounded great and doable!
Thus the wonderful Kashmiri students will inshaAllah continue
their last year of high school at our Wisdom House in Chanan,
a remote village and many will feel proud that they graduated
at the end of the school year. .
Dear brothers and sisters, if you would like to participate
in this noble cause please do send in your tax deductible
donations to International Education and Welfare Society
at 10351 Parkview Ave, Westminster, CA 92683. Tax ID # 33-0716944.
Even as little as $100.00 will help. Please don’t
delay. Do it now! As big businesses and professional people
you can afford to be generous and Allah S.T will reward
you and give you manifold in return.