When Mukesh was five years old, his family left their village and migrated to Delhi hoping to find work. In the slums of Faridabad, they built a shelter with concrete block and a tarp roof. All around them was the noise and red dirt of heavy industry, and their water source was a filthy, polluted canal flowing between the thousands of shelters. Mukesh’s father was a day laborer, going to the market each morning in hopes of being hired. Life for Mukesh and his family was desperate. Would his father be hired? Would there be food to eat? What dangers lurked in the darkness of night?
One day Mukesh saw children dressed in school uniforms. He asked where they went to school and learned that he was welcome to join them. At the school he was given a uniform, books, and a warm meal. This was a place like no other! There were songs, lessons, and loving teachers. Mukesh says, “Because of the school I can study as I want and some day become a leader.”