Dropped out, But not out

Dropped out, But not out

Mounesh Kammar, son of Rangappa from Garbagudi village of Harapanahalli taluk of Davangere district, Karnataka, dropped out of school when he was in Class VI. When he was six years old his father died. He was an agricultural labourer. He has three brothers and a sister, all elder to him. They all lived in a small tiled single-room village house. Since his mother Lakshmamma, who also did coolie work, was unable to sustain the family, Mounesh started working on a farm belonging to their neighbour. He was paid Rs. 15/- for a full day’s work.
In 1998 Don Bosco Child Labour Mission (DBCLM) started the Residential Bridge Course for child labourers in Davangere. Don Bosco also formed a network of NGOs in the district for the eradication of child-labour. By then, Mounesh had worked on the farm for about a year and a half. An NGO known as SEEDS (Socio, Economic and Education Development Society) identified Mounesh at his workplace and brought him to DBCLM for the Residential Bridge Course. The boy showed great interest in learning. After one year, he was re-admitted to the Government school at Harapanahalli and placed in Class VII. He was also admitted to the Government hostel for scheduled caste students in Harapanahalli. He studied there till he passed his SSLC.
After his SSLC, Fr. Kuriakose Puthenpurayil, Director of Don Bosco Child Labour Mission, helped him to join the Pre-University Course (PUC) at Shree Ujjaini Jagadguru Morularaja (SUJM) College, a private college in Harapanahalli. In the first year, he stayed in a rented room as he did not get a room in the Govt. Hostel. But in the second year he stayed in the Govt. Hostel. He passed PUC with 81.66% marks. It was a remarkable achievement.
After PUC he got admission for Diploma in Education (D. Ed.) under the Government quota where he had to pay only a small amount. He completed his D. Ed. with 80% marks. After this he prepared for various competitive examinations and in December 2010 he was selected for the post of Police Constable. Since December 2011, Mounesh is undergoing training at the Police Training School at Khanapur in Belgaum District.
Mounesh says that Fr. Kuriakose is like a god for him; what he is today is due to him. He is also grateful to his brother who supported him partly during his studies.
On being asked what would be his motto in life as a Police Constable, Mounesh said he would work for bringing justice for the poor. He is a model for all the students of Don Bosco Child Labour Mission and makes DBCLM proud.
Mounesh – Don Bosco Davangere

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