The National Commission for Human Development (NCHD) Chairperson, Razina Alam Khan, Monday said the commission had imparted literacy skills to 3.4 million illiterates in Pakistan.
She said this as leader of Pakistan delegation during a training workshop regarding non-formal education under ‘Advancing Quality Alternative Learning’ (AQAL) project in Tokyo where community-based learning was reviewed under the auspices of JICA and the government of Japan, a message received here from Tokyo said.
She said 310,146 children were acquiring education in 5,949 feeder schools, where 6,581 facilitators and teachers were delivering multi-grade teaching to the learners.
She said the NCHD was involved not only in the designing, planning and implementation of the basic literacy programmes but had vast experience of piloting many need-based special initiatives in the country with the collaboration of international donors.
She said the government of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), under the leadership of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, had given special emphasis to education, as vision 2025 envisages increasing primary school enrollment and completion rate to 100 per cent and literacy rate to 90 per cent, along with improving primary and secondary gender parity index.
She informed that the NCHD and JICA had launched ‘100% Literate Islamabad Project’ in which 50 multi-grade teaching schools were being established for the age group of 8 to 14 years in Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT).
She said non-formal education can cater well for out of school children and illiterate community in Pakistan.
There was a need that the government, as well as donors, should work together to promote education in rural areas on a priority basis, she added.
While talking about the achievements of NCHD, she said NCHD in a short period of time had won ‘International Reading Award of Literacy’, and it was declared as a ‘Lead Agency’ in the field of literacy in Pakistan.
She said mass literacy campaigns present literacy as a panacea for a variety of social ills and a passport to social and economic development. But, the tragedy remained in most of the Asian countries that these programmes were often political and made empty and unfulfilled claims, she added.
She said Japan was one of the countries which had made swift economic progress in the 20th century due to political, social and spiritual factors supported by education and skill development, as an intelligent combination of these components contributed to the economic growth of Japan.