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Asia Today ISSN 1861-4604 Monday, May 21, 2018

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Pakistani gives street kids the gift of education

Muhammad Ayub running his own free school for street children since 20 years

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Muhammad Ayub has been running his own free school for street children in a park in Islamabad for 20 years. The volunteer teacher says he's just trying to improve the opportunities for Pakistan's 'have-nots.'

It's a chilly morning in Islamabad, and Muhammad Ayub's pupils are dutifully reciting their first lesson of the day. The class is taking place, as always, in a city park just around the corner from Islamabad's well-known Kohsar Market. Ayub has been running this school for poor children for nearly two decades. It's become his vocation.
"Everyone who is already educated must help educate illiterate people in their homes, in their towns, in their cities and other places where they are," Ayub says. "If they teach one word every day, then [you will] see, little by little, how we can overcome the education gap in our country."
Those who can afford it send their children to elite private schools with fees running to thousands of Pakistani rupees per month. The rest have to rely on under-financed government schools to educate their children.
Without Ayub's street school these kids would never get access to education at all.
Humble beginnings
Ayub isn't a trained teacher. After his parents died, he had to care for his siblings and educate and feed them. He came to Islamabad looking for a job and worked as a laborer, "anything to help feed my family and afford the expenses of my own education." more...

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