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About Us - History

In the year 2013, UNICEF published a report of the overwhelming statistics that made quite a grim reading of the country’s state of education. Majority of the kids who have not been lucky enough to receive proper education simply fade into oblivion or even worse – drown in a pool of social evils and all those things that render their futures dark and bleak forever. Children who are very much prone to such risks are those who are generally located in rural areas. This is probably because rural communities have limited access to the country’s assets which include access to good basic education due to lack of school resources as well as teachers.

At 2.9 per cent of GDP, Pakistan’s investment in education falls way short of the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) requirements. The education system is in shambles and if the nation is to stand up and be counted as a major player in the global system, it is the responsibility of those who have been privileged enough to get a good education, to do their part by helping those who have not been so lucky in this regard.

UMEED – then and now!

It is for these aforementioned reasons, Institute of Space Technology (IST) initiated a project ten years back in order to improve the educational standards and state of schools in rural areas in the vicinity of its campus. Headed by Mr. Imran Rahman, as a life-long president, Umeed was founded in the year 2005. Umeed’s main mission at the beginning was to set a unique trend of helping out underprivileged schools and students in the rural areas and help the kids kick start their education careers so that they have a bright future to look forward to.

From rather humble beginnings, the welfare society has put itself in a position where it can now give hope to thousands of children who deserve equal opportunity but may never have that if not given a chance.

Today Umeed is a registered society with its members and donors increasing significantly.

We shall change!

We cannot change the world without changing the narrative that sustains these problems.

Our capacity to change the world and to make the lives of those around us better is deepened and strengthened in proximity. At times, affecting change requires us to stand when others sit and speaking up when others are quiet.

Aware of the fact that improving Pakistan’s education situation is not going to happen overnight, Umeed has jotted down a list of achievable targets. Here at Umeed, we strongly believe that change will happen only if we are willing to be that change. And for this very reason, our institute has collected a pool of volunteers who happen to be students of IST and other universities. These youngsters have played an immense and active role in making Umeed a real possibility. To empower local communities, especially children, we have taken an undertaking which drives us to provide for the educational needs of schools and children so that they are also able to get the same tools to educate themselves like kids in the cities do.

Two years back, we conducted a survey to explore fifty schools in the rural areas around IST. After coming across those schools, we broke down those fifty schools in five sectors with each sector being covered by our students. After establishing close contact with all identified schools, we realized that all these schools were in dire need of basic educational necessities. Many kids in those schools could not afford to buy pencils let alone uniforms. Hence, we used all funds collected by our donors to provide for the schools’ and children’s needs.

In the field of education, we are currently more focused on the immediate needs of primary schools in the surrounding rural areas. Working in those areas has brought to light some of the education system’s biggest challenges. However, we have pressed on and aspire to continue to do so. Having a strong and committed taskforce of volunteers has indeed helped us stay on our path.

With time, Umeed has gathered a lot of experience regarding the infrastructure of rural schools that is in dire need of a revamp. In Kurtana, we started renovation of a school a year back and thanks to the unwavering dedication and diligence of our team, the school is now up and running and hopefully will serve as a beacon of hope and a blueprint of future success, both for other schools and for Umeed.

Because every child is special

Education is the right of every human being on this planet. The literacy stats in Pakistan do not give a very positive outlook. However, we believe that Umeed can do its part in improving the literacy rate and making education more than just a pipe dream for all the kids it can reach out to.

Being practical and ambitious at the same time

Here at Umeed, we are very ambitious about bringing educational reforms in rural areas in our vicinity. However, we know that it is a path fraught with many difficulties, challenges and at times, disappointments which is why we are taking things one step at a time so that the task never becomes a herculean one. Currently, we are involved in improving the educational environment of schools located in the rural areas of Pakistan.

Inspiring a generation

All year round, members of Team Umeed spend time with the underprivileged children and often bring them to IST so that they get a hands-on experience of what it feels like to be part of a top educational institute. Moreover, such tours also inspire these young kids to cast their lot on good education in order to become important members of the society for years to come.
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Institute of Space Technology P O Box 2750, Islamabad 44000, Pakistan