In the West, school desks are a common commodity. In every school, we see desks and chairs of all kinds. No matter if they are made of wood, plastic or steel, desks can be found everywhere unless a natural disaster occurs. However, in India, many children have to go without them. Aarambh created the Help Desk, a cheap cardboard desk that can also be used as a briefcase.
Studying without a desk can affect children’s posture, can damage their eyesight and can even lead to bad handwriting. The New Bombay-based non-profit charity organization Aarambh decided to do something about this problem. The Help Desk is a writing surface made from recycled cardboard. In order to make it, the company spends only 20 cents. However, the cardboard desk manages to drastically improve both the learning experience and the children’s health.
The company gathers discarded cardboard boxes from corporate housing, retail outlets and recycling facilities. The boxes are then unfolded and the designers trace the outline of the desk on the cardboard. Afterwards, the outline is cut with a laser and the pieces of the box are refolded to form the Help Desk. The item also folds as a briefcase and the Help Desk can be used to store books and other study items
Aarambh distributed these desks throughout the schools in rural Maharashtra which can be found in western India. With the aid of these desks, the children were able to study better and more cheerfully. The company has plans to distribute their product in other regions of the country as well.
The Help Desk is one of the first steps that need to be made in order to improve the quality of life for schoolchildren in India. Other measures include better sanitation facilities, improved personal hygiene, and safer study environments. Do you think the cardboard desk is a good step forward?