Schools

 

Perhaps the most extensive (and ultimately important) service work done by Ananda Marga is the running of schools on the spiritual and universal principles of Neohumanist Education. Schools are run for children of deprived communities (of which there are hundreds of examples throughout the developing world) as well as for prosperous communities in developed countries.

The Lotus Children’s Centre in Accra, Ghana, runs an early childhood centre and pre-school in order to provide low-cost high quality education for local children whose families are unable to afford education for their children.

The lotus flower symbolizes beauty and purity. The lotus grows in muddy and stagnant ponds, yet all the dirt and impurities simply roll off its petals. Similarly, we hope that despite whatever disadvantaged backgrounds our children may come from, they will also grow up to be like these symbolic flowers: clean, pure and free.

The children come from different tribes and have different mother tongues. Some of the children come from a Christian background and some from Muslim families. We also have teachers from the both religions and from different tribes working together in cooperation. Ghana is a wonderful example of tolerance and cooperation, with Christians and Muslims living and working side by side in harmony.

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We currently have 70 children and six teachers in four classrooms, serving Class 1, KG2, KG1, nursery 2, nursery 1 and crèche. Volunteer programs are also very important to help raise the standard of the school because volunteers are able to give the needed attention to small groups of children at different levels as well help training the teachers in different skills.

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In keeping with the ideals of Neohumanist Education, the children learn through stories, dramatizations, art, yoga classes, social service and the teachers’ examples, to love and care for themselves, others, plants and animals, and the planet as manifestations of divinity.

Art and music is an important part of the daily activities of the children. This is quite different from other schools in Ghana as most only use colored crayons, ignoring other forms of art like music, dance, painting, recycling hand craft, drama, sculpture in clay, etc.

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