Music for Development (MfD) harnesses the transformative power of art and music, to develop life-changing capabilities and skills, for groups of Dhaka’s slum-dwelling children.Our guiding philosophy and key differentiator follows from the 1913 Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore’s idea that many past understandings of ‘education’ may no longer be by themselves adequate for children to prosper today. Our project seeks to develop fully rounded young adults, by reinforcing their normal school-based literacy/numeracy learning with relevant tutorial support, as well as broadening their education and life skills, to enable them to break out of the cycle of poverty and become fully engaged responsible members of their society.
Goals:Build incomegeneration capabilities, Nurturing interpersonalsocial skills, to guide them in becoming confident, principled, participating members of society, Provoke consideration of their own personalresponsibilities as well as responsibility towards their community, Raise awareness of human rights, improve the lives of children of sex workers, who remain a stigmatised part of society.
In Dhaka, 3.2 million inhabitants are slum-dwellers and nearly 1.5 million Bangladeshi slum-dwellers are children. These slums lack even the most basic amenities, such as running water, hygiene, sewage systems, waste disposal and access to basic services, such as health clinics. Children particularly face hardships that include hunger, malnutrition, and insufficient education. The long-term objectives of MfD are drawn from the National Education Policy (2010) of the government of Bangladesh.
1) To remove socio-economic discrimination, to develop fellow-feeling and respect for human rights
The project aims to provide equal learning opportunities to these children in an environment where children from all social classes can mingle and create an atmosphere of fellow-feeling and friendliness regardless of one’s background.
2) To ensure a creative, favourable and joyful environment for children for proper protection and congenial development;
The project aims to develop the ability of free-thinking and creative expression in children. The staff will ensure a protective and favourable environment for the children through monitoring and safeguarding policies.
3) To help students grow up with sound moral character
The process of arts education serves as an outlet of the mind and imagination; through this children will develop an understanding of rights and responsibilities. They will be given social/moral lessons for character development and encouraged to become social change agents to influence the moral values and motivation of other children from similar backgrounds.
However, the achievement of these objectives is susceptible to several problems. Performing arts are often discouraged due to social/religious restrictions in these areas; as a result, convincing the parents of the benefits of arts education is a challenge in itself. Therefore, parent-teacher meetings will be conducted regularly, updating parents on the progress made by their children, so that they see results themselves and consult them on our areas needing improvement.