05/31/2017, 13.23
INDIA
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For Indian Nun, street children deserve a future

by Santosh Digal

Sister Alice Kakkattupilliyil belongs to the Daughters of Charity. Since 2015, she has followed the education of 160 children aged 4 to 12 years . Her biggest difficulty is that children often do not want to go to school. "We must guide them with tenacity and fill them with optimism, patience, love and care."

Lucknow (AsiaNews) - Street children "deserve a better future, like other children who are better off in terms of opportunity of growth," said Sister Alice Kakkattupilliyil, 50, a member of the the Daughters of Charity (also known as "Canossians").

The missionary is involved in educating street children in Lucknow diocese, Uttar Pradesh State, northern India. “Street children who have to fend for themselves along with their family members or pimps deserve education, human dignity and a better future to grow up,” Sister Alice Kakkattupilliyil told AsiaNews.

Since 2015, the nun and lay collaborators have worked with 160 children aged 4 to 12 who have never heard or attended a school.

“Our primary task is to generate in them a desire to learn and motivate them to find a way for the future, for which education is the only way,” she said.

“Once they are trained in basic life skills, motivation, health and hygiene, the most important thing is to pursue education. Then they are enrolled in public or private schools thanks to educational subsidies, like a scholarship or through help from some local benefactors who pay their school fees”.

The nun`s main difficulty "is that the children often do not want to continue studying or do not want to go to school. This is why we must continue to guide them with tenacity and fill them with optimism, patience, love and care, because in them there is an innate desire to learn and continue to learn.”

Over time, "the children realise the importance of education. Although they spent life on the streets, this does not mean that they have to be [there] forever."

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