TMS: Where there is a will, there is a way

Sabieh ul Hasan Rizvi

Tauseef Memorial School (TMS) is a charity school that runs daily in three shifts. It is a self-funded, long-term education project, in fact a youth initiative by the energetic PYO (Pakistani Youth Organisation) members, to privilege every child with quality education especially the poor. It is situated in Gulshan-e-Iqbal, Karachi. The school was inaugurated on Aug 1, 2007. It is named after one of the dedicated member of PYO, Tauseef Ahmed, who lost his life in an accident in April 2007. Presently, 180 students are enrolled and many more are waiting!
TMS is an initiative by motivated young souls. My team and I had no money when we started it. We started it on an open terrace with hardly 15 kids. Now, after a huge struggle, we have 5 small rooms. 180 poor kids are taking free quality education in the morning, afternoon and evening shifts. Classes are held from pre-primary to grade 8th. Special “Literacy Course” is also taught to the children aged 10 years and above who have never been to any school. Children of ages 4 to 16 years are currently enrolled in TMS. There are 3 classrooms, a small library and a computer lab that enhances the learning process. Special focus is laid on the skills and confidence of the students by taking them to different competitions and programs. Extra-curricular activities are an integral part of their learning experience. Moreover, following the latest trends and innovation, STEM Robotics classes are also initiated in this small school to make them skilful as well as Arabic language for juniors is being implemented with latest researched curriculum.
The level of quality studies can be measured by the fact that TMS Students are capable of achieving up to 77% marks in Matric exams (9th& 10th) after just passing the 6th grade of TMS.
Diversification of this project has made it outstanding in the social working field. TMS is situated in Madina Colony, in Gulshan-e-Iqbal, Karachi, where people from various ethnic and religious backgrounds live together. I believe in the Quaid’s Pakistan where no discrimination relating to colour, creed, sects, religion, gender or caste should prevail. We follow the principles of humanity and morality. In TMS there are Sindhi, Punjabi, Baloch, Pashtun, Kashmiri, Bengali, Urdu speaking, Mawati and Siraiki students. Some students are Christians, Shia Muslims, Sunni Muslims, etc but all are getting equal share of education. Religious tolerance, brotherhood and harmony are being practiced.

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TMS is not only my achievement but of Karachi too. Karachi was considered as a hub of criminal activities, but with education, I have overcome some social problems like beggary, child marriages, illiteracy, street crimes, drug addiction, denied women and child rights, etc. One of our successes is that we have won the trust of parents in sending their girls in evening shift too. We are now preparing to spread its system of education with the help of computerised system. It would easily be replicated and many deprived societies could get benefits from it.
Many noble people sponsor TMS student’s educational expenses and hence becoming agents of change. TMS is not just a school or learning centre but a community centre where disputes of their families are solved, advice is given, counselling is being done so that the parents can aim higher and better, health coverage is provided, rations are provided, even orphan students and child labourers are also being taken care of.
Running a charity school with satisfactory academic results, teaching and convincing people from their socio-economic group to study is a very tough job and requires so much passion, persistency, selflessness and devotion.
It has transformed me completely. TMS is like a miracle that has happened to me and changed my personality. It is rightly said that before changing others, it is better to change yourself first. I have learned a lot and still learning, brought change in individual’s lives and still bringing the positive change, Alhamdulillah.

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