As the world reels due to the impact of Covid-19 and most people are forced to put their education on hold, UMRAN Green School, a pioneering initiative, provides a new ray of hope to language enthusiasts. The new platform brings together the global polyglot community as they engage in language teaching and learning along with multicultural collaboration. Engaging participants from India, Turkey, Macedonia, the US, Spain, El Salvador, Brazil, Colombia, Saudi Arabia, Russia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Egypt, Germany, Gambia, Sri Lanka, Argentina and Iran, UMRAN is offering online classes for beginners of Turkish, German, Arabic, English, Persian and Urdu which began this Saturday. With six hours a week of intensive teaching by native teachers, UMRAN is also offering free language e-books and learning resources to its registered students.
‘With a view that access to education should be easily accessible to all regardless of their economic or social condition, UMRAN aims to be a platform that can also offer linguistic skills to adults seeking to continue their education.‘
Online language learning and exchange are not the only focus of UMRAN which is also organizing weekly cultural webinars for participants to share poetry, songs, dance, thoughts, and ideas. The first online cultural webinar kickstarted on the 16th of June as M.Rafey from India shared powerful poetry by Tagore that looks to the future followed by Meraj Alam’s recitation of the Spanish poem Los nadies (The Nobodies) by Eduardo Galeano exploring the collective ethos of shared human struggles and hope. Bringing the evening to a perfect close was Rohouallal Vakilzadeh’s lilting music from his hometown in Iran.
The aim is to create a global community and foster hope, learning and openness to new cultures in these uncertain times when travelling and exorbitant spending on language education seem improbable if not impossible. With a view that access to education should be easily accessible to all regardless of their economic or social condition, UMRAN aims to be a platform that can also offer linguistic skills to adults seeking to continue their education. With its dedicated team of expanding volunteers who speak a variety of languages, UMRAN Green School also aims to empower communities in less developed areas. It hopes to expand its reach to women who have had to forgo education due to personal or familial obligations. A little bit goes a long way in empowering communities through individuals, believes the founder of UMRAN Foundation, Rajeev Kumar, based out of Istanbul.
– Ishitaa Saxena, PhD student, French studies , JNU