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Jump Start Education Program

SKS' vision is to become an integrated community development organization, building capacity through education, health care, sustainable agriculture and environmental programs. In keeping with this vision, SKS will launch a preschool "Jump Start" program in its service area to benefit member families. The initiative will provide comprehensive education, health, and nutrition services to children, ages 3-5, in 8 villages where SKS women's banking cooperatives already exist.

To implement these services, SKS will construct a school building in each village, hire and train local villagers to staff each school, and organize periodic medical camps for immunizations, physicals and dental and ophthalmologic care. SKS will also facilitate parent-teacher partnerships to increase parental involvement with their children and to enhance parental knowledge about their child's learning and development.

The overall goal of the program is to develop the necessary intellectual, social, and emotional skills in each child to ensure preparedness for academic success in elementary school. SKS' target population consists of children in poor, rural communities belonging to families of landless laborers or marginal farmers who draw their livelihood from subsistence agriculture. SKS proposes to serve approximately 20 children, ages 3-5, in each of 8 villages for a total enrollment of 160 children each year. Phase I will launch Jump Start in 4 villages as of February 2001 and Phase II will expand the program to 8 villages in June 2001.

SKS' Jump Start program is made possible by the generous support of the i2 Cares program of the i2 Foundation.

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