Editor’s Note: Sangharsh is a community-based education and rehabilitation center for children with disabilities, run by Global Fund for Children partner Sahyog Mumbai. At Sangharsh, children have a safe space where they can access basic education, extra-curricular activities, and functional therapy. The organization then helps each student integrate into school or a vocational training program, opening doors to greater independence.
My name is Tauseen, and I am 19 years old. I live with my mother in Mumbai.
I have a disability that makes my body shake and it also makes it difficult for me to speak clearly. When I was 6 years old, before coming to Mumbai from my village, my father passed away in an accident.
My mother bravely took care of me and my brother, who also had the same disability. I began feel better after my treatment started and was enrolled in school. But my brother’s condition slowly began to get bad and he passed away in 2013.
The disability slowly took its toll on me, too. It was difficult for me to write and read. My friends stopped talking to me. People in my neighborhood would make fun of me, and the principal asked my mother to stop sending me to school.
I like school and wanted to study more, but because of fear of ridicule I would mostly stay indoors at home.
In 2015, my mother got a job with an NGO called Sahyog as a health worker. She got to know about their program Sangharsh, where children who had problems were provided with education and vocational training.
I would go there two days a week to study. I made friends with Sufiya and Namira who were good to me. The teachers there would not force me to do any work and were patient with me.
Sahyog helped me to study for my 10th standard. They got a tutor for me and arranged a writer, who helped me write my exams. I got 54% on first attempt and was so happy. Now I am in 12th standard through[the National Institute of Open Schooling].
My favorite subject is English. I feel education helps you become self-reliant and gives you a secured future. My mother is my biggest idol; I like her nature and behavior, she encourages me to give my best.
My dream is to make my parents proud and to help others. My advice to those in situations like mine is not to lose hope and to stay strong.
Tauseen’s story is part of Global Fund for Children’s Role Model Series featuring inspiring youth who are standing up for children’s rights around the world.
Sangharsh celebrated its 15th anniversary in 2018. Meet more Sangharsh students in this video.
Global Fund for Children (GFC) UK Trust, created in 2006, is a UK registered charity (UK charity number 1119544). We work to generate vital income, create new fundraising opportunities, and raise awareness of the invaluable work of GFC’s grassroots grantees. Our aim is to extend the reach of GFC in the United Kingdom, Europe, and beyond.
1 Fore Street
London EC2Y 9DT