Saturday, August 19, 2006

A venture to educate poor children

India is a top technology hub and a leading developing nation today. But this icing hides from us the fact that around 60-70% of India consists of villages and rural population and slums and other weak sections of the society, where people have not even touched or seen a computer. But this scene is slowly changing with our beloved Indian President, APJ's vision for India 2020. In support of his vision, was created SAVE.

SAVE, which stands for, Society's Anti-Virus and Educator, was a voluntary network that a few of us back in Hyderabad, India, formed a few years back, with the motive of educating the underprivileged children dwelling in the impoverished sections of the Hyderabad society.
With child labor being prevalent in these sections of the Indian society, these children, of the ages 7-15 were made to work collecting berries, breaking beetle nuts and carpentary.

Each one asked ourself this question, what have we done that these children haven't done, to enjoy all the fruits and luxuries of life? No answer! So we decided to share what we have, not the monetary components - there are innumerous philanthropists doing that today, but our education. Being no more than software professionals from various IT firms, we did not have the expertise to convince the families of these children or motivate them that education or a basic level of literacy is a fundamental requirement for their children. So we tied up with CRY (Child Relief and You) and Mahita to help pull out these children and convince their parents to send them to school. We started teaching them English, Mathematics and General Awareness etc. and have been doing that since mid 2004. A few of the initiators, including myself, have had to move out due to career transitions, but the program is still at its best, with Deepak, a very good friend of mine, spearheading the operations until today.

Deepak also enjoyed the privilege of being the chief guest at the school's Independence Day celebrations this year and has sent us a video of the kids there greeting us and saying that they miss us even today. I am deeply moved beyond what I can express in writing here, we miss them a lot too!

Click here to download this small video

To prevent misuse, I will make it unavialable in a few days. Thanks Deepak!


Sunday, August 06, 2006

An MBA can make the difference

Hahaha! Unsarcastic and true, and here I am getting an MBA!