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Pay It Forward: Two NGOs Bringing Education To Underprivileged Children
Syrah on Jun 21, 2013

Light of Life Trust (LOLT)
As the name suggests, this organisation brings light to children in the rural parts of Maharashtra and makes a huge difference through education. Through a unique initiative called ‘Anando’, this trust connects urban and rural children via a choice to help and education. This project launched in 2005. Ms. Villy Doctor, founder trustee of Light of Life Trust says, “This idea of getting urban kids to help rural kids came to me one day while talking to some urban school kids in Mumbai. One of them came up with this brilliant idea that we kids in the city have our little piggy banks and collect money for the poor people, why can’t we share this with the village kids. He proposed this to his mother and opted to share this idea with his friends. It was this openness, sharing and willingness from the child, the joy he experienced; it was like a wow experience for him. This made us at LOLT sit back and think about this innovative scheme of each urban child helping a rural child to complete education.”

It takes Rs 8400 to educate a rural child for a year, making it approximately Rs 20 a day. The understanding between the urban child and parent is that he pays 50% of the total amount from his pocket money and the parent pays the other 50% i.e. the urban child pays only Rs 10 a day and the parent pays the equal amount. The parent usually donates the entire amount to LOLT before reaching this understanding with the child. In this manner, urban children are encouraged to support their less privileged rural brethren at a young age. This makes them feel socially useful and helps them become better human beings.
This project has proved to be very successful as it has spread to 35 centres in 325 villages and hamlets of 5 districts of Maharashtra, with about 3500 children. Around 100 Anando children have joined different colleges and ITI’s (Industrial Technological Institutes) in 2008. In 2009, 141 children joined different colleges and ITI’s. Summing up the need and importance of education, Ms. Villy adds, “Education has become vital for survival and growth of the country. Education also has to be imparted at different levels so that an all-round personality development can be created. We at Anando believe in developing all the potentials and aptitude of a child beside the academic curriculum. We have music, sports, fine arts, value education, leadership training, vocational training and learning through experimentation and project work. Education is a major need in rural India and that the school dropout rate at the secondary education level has to be handled.”
Get Involved
Volunteer: Give your time and volunteer by teaching the children.
Donate: Be generous to kids who don’t have all benefits and donate.
Spread the word: Generate awareness about LOLT is to contribute your experiences with or thoughts on our projects. You can mail them at bandra@lolt.in For more information visit www.lolt.in