Udayavni Special

Pakistan: Roshan, the camel carries books for school children


Team Udayavani, Apr 26, 2021, 2:47 PM IST

Source: Unsplash

Roshan, the camel from Pakistan, carries priceless cargo: books for children who can no longer go to school because of coronavirus lockdowns.

The school children living in remote villages where streets are too narrow for vehicles, crowd around Roshan and shout, “the camel is here.”

In March 2020, schools in Pakistan were closed as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Around 50 million school-age children and university students were told to continue their education from home. In places like Balochistan, where many villages don’t have internet access it difficult to continue online classes.

This project is a collaboration with the Female Education Trust and Alif Laila Book Bus Society, two NGOs that have been running children’s library projects in Pakistan for 36 years.

Roshan, the camel carries books to four different villages in the district of Kech, visiting each village three times a week and staying for about two hours each time. School children borrow books and return them the next time Roshan visits.

The project needs to continue and expand to cover more villages but needs funding: around $118 a month is needed now each month for Roshan.

Murad Ali, Roshan’s owner says that he was taken aback when he was first contacted about the project, but later realized that camels were a sensible mode of transport.

Reports state that Balochistan makes up nearly half of Pakistan by area, but the sparsely populated province is also the country’s most impoverished.

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