Ever wondered what happens to truck containers once they wear out?
Well, one woman is giving them a new lease on life by transforming them into colourful, air-conditioned classrooms running on solar power!
Co-founder and CEO of Safeducate, a training, skilling and consulting firm, Divya Jain launched the initiative in 2015. Within three years, these container classrooms have successfully trained over 20,000 students from Tier-3 cities of rural India!
Speaking to India Today Education, Divya says, “The container school programme is an initiative to reach the masses where government reach is limited. The innovative concept will greatly bring down the cost and effort involved in developing infrastructure to meet the skilling needs of people.”
Her initiative has been widely appreciated by the National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) and the Ministry of Rural Development (MORD).
How do these container schools function?
Once the large containers are scrapped, the team sources them from shipyards and recycles them based on their requirements, making classrooms, laboratories, libraries, restrooms, dormitories, simulation labs, office spaces, receptions etc.
The advantage of these container schools is they are 100% reusable and portable.
The skill development programmes that Safeducate conducts in these containers targets youth as well as children who do not have access to amenities or schools in their localities.
The concept can be of great help to the government to conduct training programmes in the remotest parts of the country, where construction of buildings for the purpose is either not financially feasible or locationally viable.
And since these are portable, they can be disassembled after a project, moved to another location for a different project, and reassembled.
What makes the container schools even more unique is that apart from being portable and cheap to build, they can be equipped to run on solar energy through the installation of panels.
Usually, building a training centre is anything but cheap. To construct a space/building which can accommodate at least 70 students would cost between Rs 16-17 lakh. A container school strikes down this cost for the same number of students at Rs 8-12 lakh.
According to the India Today report, NSDC has a partnership with Safeducate, to help them reach their target of a million students across the country, with funding for ten years at nominal interest rates.
In addition to skill development programmes, Safeducate has also used the concept of container schools for specially-abled children in Chhapra, Bihar.
“Safeducate believes that skilling is not just about making someone job-ready. Skilling can result in entrepreneurship as well. The organisation aims to cater to the immediate skill-building needs of school dropouts and the underprivileged, and make them job-ready for an entry-level position,” Divya told the publication.
Divya Jain’s aim for the second phase of the Container School Programme is to extend its geographical reach and cater to 70,000 students.
(Edited by Shruti Singhal)
Know more about Safeducate, check them out on Facebook here.