Street Smart

Street Smart works with slum and street children who rag pick and beg for a living. The original focus of this project was art therapy and basic literacy.

The scope and depth of this project has increased many folds since the beginning of the program. Currently, approximately 500 children attend Street Smart program across six learning centers in Dehradun. Our aim is to bring children into literacy and mainstream them into schools. 516 children have been mainstreamed in the past few years.


Learning centers

Early Learning Centre at Govindgarh:  Located in one of the poorest quarters of Dehradun, this project introduces children to the concept of basic literacy and to the habit of attending a daily program. We have a creche facility which provides an opportunity for marginalized older girls to come under our care along with their younger siblings.

Time: 9 a.m-12:30 p.m.

No of children: 140


Street Smart at The Haven, Indira Nagar:  Aasraa’s main centre for formal learning & preparatory classes leading to mainstreaming, at Haven slum and street children take their first steps on their journey into education. It is a pre-mainstreaming program preparing children to be placed in age appropriate classes in mainstream schools. Aasraa then sponsors their education going forward.

Time: 9.30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

No of Children: 110


 Rajkiya Purva Madhyamik Vidhyalaya, Rajpur Road & Anti- Begging Campaign:

This project caters to children of migrant laborers who have settled in the Bindal slum. Children of these laborers either have to work to sustain meager livelihoods or beg for food. Our mobile learning bus brings these out-of-school children to our center for basic literacy and for preparing them to be mainstreamed.

The anti begging campaign strives to eradicate child begging  through education & vocational training. This program is run in conjunction with the District Magistrate and NGO partner Childline.

Time: 9 a.m. – 4.30 p.m.

No of Children: 145


Azad Colony & Anti Begging Campaign Bus at ISBT: An extension of the Anti-Begging Campaign this initiative is targeted at street & slum children who do not attend school. They are initiated into literacy through E-Learning, art & craft.

ISBT is a hot spot for begging in Dehradun. Due to ongoing construction activities, many migrant labourers have settled in the area. We aim to integrate the out-of-school children of these labourers to mainstream education. This project covers slum areas like Azad colony, the famous ‘Kabadi Bazaar’ (hub of rag pickers) and Dholak Basti.

Time:  11:00 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.

No of Children: 135

Mobile Learning Centre, Raipur Road                                                               

In September 2017, we launched a new mobile learning project to educate the drop-out children from Sapera Basti and Rajasthani Basti slum areas on Raipur Road. This project aims to provide basic literacy to children and young women for a better and productive wellbeing.

 Time:10 a.m – 3 p.m

No. of Children: 35

Mobile Education Carts                                                                                        

Aasraa has launched its mobile learning education carts which negotiate tight ‘gullies’ in slums allowing us to reach & teach previously unreachable & unteachable children. At these carts, we teach them how to write their names and ignite interest towards learning in them.

Time: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

No of Children: 45


 2 Projects

 Aasraa Trust is an accredited center of the National Institute of Open Schooling (NIOS) – Open Basic Education (OBE) programme for Level A, B & C (equivalent to classes 3, 5 and 8). Children who are too old to be mainstreamed can get an education through this programme. The programme is run at 2 centers in Govindgarh (9 am to 12.30pm) and Azad Colony, ISBT (10am to 2.30pm).

Time: 9 a.m – 2.30 p.m.

No. of children 110



For the older children, Street Smart is running a Vocational Training Program to discourage begging and encourage learning a skill, how to run a business, self reliance and independence. The focus is to remove young people from the dangers associated with street life.

We are working with a designer of ethnic products,  to train our children in various crafts.  The designer is currently training the older children the art of block printing on paper and textiles and work with a master for sewing technique. The intention is to create a business into which these children can grow and be part of society and not remain marginalized.


Street Smart provides:

  • Bus transportation to and from slums to our centers
  • Basic literacy, bridge course for mainstreaming
  • Computer education
  • Music classes
  • Clothing
  • Nutrition ranging from meals to fruit & milk
  • Medical attention
  • Vocational Training
  • Counselling

Extensive teacher training has been done in order engage these children and bring them into education.