Project information

School furniture for Pakistan's poorest children

Starfish Asia gives poor children from minority community families in Pakistan the chance to go to school. Hundreds of thousands of poor children have no school to go to, so many Christians have opened their own, often poorly equipped and funded. We provide desks, chairs and school books for them.

October 2018 - September 2019

Charity information: Starfish Asia

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  • Need


    Pakistan's 5 million Christians are among the poorest and most neglected of communities, mostly working as sweepers, labourers and manual workers, or unemployed. Few Christians have education, maybe 90% remain illiterate and their children have no access to Government schools. Few can afford private schooling. This marginalized minority urgently needs the dignity and hope of education to prepare them for a life of dignity in which they can contribute to their society.


    Christian entrepreneurs, some local Pastors or Teachers, have opened schools in desperately poor communities in slums and villages in order to give their children a chance to get an education. We know of 600 such schools across Pakistan. They urgently need basic resources, as many have no furniture, classroom space or proper facilities. Our project aims to provide desks, chairs, equipment and basic facilities for these schools and their heroic teachers, who are transforming their communities

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Identify 50 slum schools in urgent need of desks,chairs, blackboards and basic school furniture.


    » Through the Starfish Pakistan national office in Lahore compile a list of most urgent needs in schools for poor Christians

    What success will look like

    Success will be demonstrated by the proven ability of the school overseers to use funding well to improve school standards and better classroom environment.

    Aim 2

    Provide required funding to local entrepreneurs with clear instructions within budget.


    » Ensure good price for locally made long-lasting furrniture for schools, provide the funds, monitor progress and evaluate the results

    What success will look like

    Success will be achieved by vastly improved teaching environment in 50 schools, affecting the dignity and eagerness to study of 3000 slum children.

  • Impact


    Long-term success in education environment improvement is demonstrated by reduced school drop-out rates (currently 50% drop out after class 5), national exam successes in classes 5, 8 and 10, teacher motivation and student enthusiasm, community pride in well-run and properly equipped school facilities for the poorest communities, increased ambition to succeed at school and in society. All will be monitored statistically by the Starfish Pakistan national office.


    Risks are that furniture provided will be mishandled, damaged or destroyed by careless students, climate and wear-and-tear. There is always a risk of schools closing for want of funding, internal dissension or community conflict. Starfish Pakistan monitors and relates closely to all the schools to which we provide help and this project is only part of our overall provision for these schools. Furniture provided will be made of low cost but sturdy wood, built to last.


    Reports as required will be provided by the local Starfish Pakistan office in Lahore. Receipts will be available for all furniture and equipment purchased or made. Signed letters will be taken from school heads. Photographs will be provided, and Starfish Pakistan audited accounts made available.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £12,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £12,000 Student furniture 3000 wood student desk/benches
  • Background


    Starfish Pakistan provides resources to slum and village schools in many parts of Pakistan. Recipient schools are located wherever there is a minority community slum and an entrepreneur already running an under-resourced but potentially viable Primary or High School serving a poor community. There are hundreds of majority Christian villages and city slum communities all over Pakistan. Few of them have any educational facilities for minority communities.


    Pakistan's Christians number about 5 million, of whom 35% are of school-going age. 90% of these children currently have no hope of an education or of escaping from poverty. That is a potential need of more than 1 million children. Without education they will be illiterate sweepers, cleaners, sanitary workers, brick-makers, labourers, as most Christians are in Pakistan. Our beneficiaries will be those in reach of schools run by visionary local entrepreneurs from within their community.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Starfish Asia (UK) has 15 years experience of providing resources to schools for the poor in Pakistan. This is based on the Directors' 37 years association with Pakistan, during which he has built a network of relationships in the Christian community. Starfish Asia, through local associate, Starfish Pakistan, currently supports 39 Middle and High schools serving more than 7,000 poor children. Our infrastructure for this project is strong and equipped to meet the need.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Michael Wakely

    Michael is executive Trustee of Starfish Asia (UK), overseeing all UK-based funding operations and co-ordination with project partners in Pakistan.

    Kerstin Wakely

    Kerstin is Mike's wife and PA, handling accounting, donor relations and project partner funding. She is essential part of the UK operation.

    Anser Javed

    Anser Javed is Director of Starfish Pakistan (Regd. Trust) that relates directly to local projects, handling funding and local accountability.

    Many School Directors

    Essential to the project's success is the role of 38 school heads who oversee production and use of the equipment under Anser's direction

A desk is a symbol of dignity and hope

A desk is a symbol of dignity and hope