The Kolkata Bhalobashi Foundation (KBF) was set up in 2006 by Amar Khalid in the slum of Topsia in Kolkata (Calcutta). Its aim is to facilitate an education for children living in the slum, whose families would otherwise be unable to afford this. This is achieved by providing a basic education in English, Hindi and Bengali in order for the children to reach a standard where they can be admitted to the local formal school. Admission to this school has a small fee in addition to the cost of books, stationery and uniform, which has to be covered by KBF.
In addition to facilitating this, KBF also provides a daily snack and clean drinking water for the children while they attend the project. For those children who are admitted into the formal school, the relationship with KBF continues, as they come back to the project after school for help with homework (and to enjoy their snack!). Amar and his wife Sathi also seek to maintain good relationships with the families in the slum by regularly visiting the children in their homes.
Originally, the project started without a building, but over the years it has grown and is now blessed with a small building on the edge of the slum that is rented for the mornings.
In 2011, there were 35 children coming to the project but this number is growing!
KBF relies entirely on charitable donations to survive. Currently, it has a number of supporters dotted around the globe who pay for the food, water and teachers’ wages between them.