Partnership with NGOs

The National Literacy Mission fully recognises the vast potential of NGOs in furthering its programmes and schemes. Therefore, ever since its inception, the National Literacy Mission has taken measures to strengthen its partnership with NGOs. The sheer grind and persistence that literacy campaigns involve have greatly diminished much of the enthusiasm that a few NGOs initially exhibited. The National Literacy Mission has made all efforts to evolve both institutional and informal mechanisms to give voluntary organisations an active promotional role in the literacy movement. Under the scheme of support to NGOs, voluntary agencies are encouraged and financial assistance is provided for activities such as:

  • Running post-literacy and continuing education programmes with the objective of total eradication of illiteracy in well-defined areas;
  • Undertaking resource development activities through establishment of State.
  • organising vocational and technical education programmes for neo-literates;
  • Promoting innovation, experimentation and action research;
  • Conducting evaluation and impart studies;
  • Organising symposia and conferences, publication of relevant books and periodicals and production of mass-media support aids.

With more and more districts having completed the post-literacy programmes, the NGOs now have to diversify the scope of their activities. They are expected to take up area-specific continuing education programmes for life-long learning. This will include skill development programmes for personal, social and occupational development.

Partnership with Universities
The adult education departments in institutions of higher learning have a very useful and practical role to play. They have genuine contributions to make both in the sphere of policy making and in practical implementation. A special scheme, therefore, for the involvement of higher educational institutions has been conceived with the specific purpose of making their role more focused. If universities and such other institutions come forward even in a moderate way, the literacy movement would benefit enormously. Some of the areas in which they can actively contribute are:

  • Provide special resource support to literacy activities in all phases
  • Provide resource support for continuing education schemes by preparing short-term courses for neo-literates
  • Undertake evaluation, research and documentation of TLC/PLC and CE programmes
  • Involve university staff on a full-time basis in literacy programmes
  • Participate in environment building
  • Run continuing education centres

Building Resources
State Resource Centres
The State Resource Centres (SRCs) have carved out a niche for themselves among the professional adult education organisations in India. There were 14 SRCs in 1980 and their number increased to 25. Managed by NGOs or universities, all SRCs are expected to provide academic and technical resource support. This is mainly done by organising training programmes, material preparation, publishing of relevant material, extension activities, innovative projects, research studies and evaluation.

In order to revitalise, re-energise and expand the role of SRCs, plans are being drafted to not only increase their number but also to equip them with the necessary infrastructure and resource facilities that will enable them to play the role of catalytic agents. They would be actively involved with actual field processes in implementation and would have a key role to play in training, material production and other resource support activities.

Another point that needs to be stressed in so far as SRCS are concerned is the retention of their voluntary character and autonomous functioning. Efforts have been recently made to ensure that SRCs are assigned only to voluntary agencies or institutions of higher learning. State-run SRCs will be discouraged as a matter of policy.

The SRCs at the moment are divided into three categories of A, B & C which receive an annual grant of Rs 36, 25 and 10 lakh, respectively. During the Ninth Five Year Plan, the State Resource Centres are proposed to be divided into two categories of A & B - which will receive an annual grant of Rs 60 lakh and Rs 40 lakh, respectively. The grading is done on the basis of the volume of work. Upgradation is based on performance or increased workload. Also, new resource centres are initially graded in the lower category. As the SRCs are 100 per cent centrally funded, it is imperative that they follow certain financial norms and ensure financial discipline.

In order to simplify the procedures and reach out to the masses, financial and administrative powers have been decentralised to the State Literacy Mission authorities. Each state has been asked to set up a literacy mission as registered bodies under the Societies Registration Act. These missions will be empowered to sanction literacy, post literacy and continuing education projects.

List of DSRC's
Click for Guidelines of SRC Population Education

Monitoring format