Project AnandoDonate Now


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Anando

Need & Rationale 

India has the largest number of out of school children in the world with approximately 5.55 crore of whom (i.e. 36%) drop out between the age group 11-18 years, of which, 4.65 crore are from rural India (The data is based on NSS round 62nd) who are not the focus of the Indian Governments intervention in the field of Education nor are they given due encouragement or support from their families who are struggling to make ends meet for their survival.

In rural India the highest percentage of out of school children is in the age group 11 – 18 years which increases as they grow older due to various reasons like – looking after their younger siblings and their homes, as parents are daily wage earners, earning an extra income for the family, no access to secondary schools, etc. The future of a young country like India is in the hands of this age group and hence the need to address the alarming issue of drop outs at the secondary school level becomes the key to the development of young India.

The issue of out of school children has raised some major concerns for secondary school education, as in comparison, enrolment percentages are relatively higher in primary schools. Secondary education is given less importance today, in terms of no special programs dedicated to it like the Sarva Siksha Abhiyan. Secondary Education is a link between elementary and higher education, also it is an important step towards vocational education and empowerment.

Inspite of the school drop out rates being higher in the rural areas there are only a few NGOs currently working towards addressing the needs of this critical segment. Looking at the abject state of this segment of children especially in rural India, Light of Life Trust decided to focus its interventions with students at the secondary school level in rural districts of the State of Maharashtra with a vision to reach out and positively impact the entire nation in a planned and phased manner.

First generation learners need support and guidance to break out of this vicious cycle of poverty and illiteracy.

The organization works towards uplifting underprivileged rural children by reinstating them in schools and equipping them with skills to live in mainstream society. Our goal is not just literacy but complete all round development of each child through our 3E Approach leading to our beneficiaries taking life changing decisions by choosing appropriate career paths further leading to their becoming responsible citizens of our country. The organization supports deserving children to take a decision post state level exams on the career they want to take up. Students desirous of pursuing higher education are also supported to seek admissions to colleges in their fields of interest. Career opportunities are enhanced by networking with vocational guidance and training institutes as well as corporates and entrepreneurs to enable student placements.

Light of life Trust through its holistic development approach is looking at supporting and strengthening capacities of its beneficiaries to break out of the vicious generational cycle of poverty that rural India is reeling under. Through its ongoing efforts the organization is looking at building a generation of youth who are literate, confident and knowledgeable of the world in which they live and who are able to make effective career choices that would lead them to gainful means of livelihood and make them and their families financial independent and stable.

Currently Project Anando is reaching out to over 4000 beneficiaries across 5 districts in the state of Maharashtra. Looking at the desk research and the need of our intervention in the districts that are educationally backward we intend to expand Project Anando to one of the following districts - Parbhani, Nanded, or Yavatmal subject to field verification in the State of Maharashtra.

In order to ensure children receive school education Light of Life Trust has initiated a new programme for school teachers – School Quality Education Programme in Anjar Tehsil, Kutch District, State of Gujarat , with the aim to enhance and strengthen school teachers in interactive classroom processes, effective modes of parent & community interactions which would all lead towards increasing involvement and participation of all the key stakeholders in a child’s life to ensure they are sustained in school to complete atleast their basic education.

Project Anando: Methodology   

The holistic development of the CHILD, being the raison d’être for Project Anando, is the centre of all programmes under the project. As the Key Stakeholder the child plays an active part in his/her development and is an involved member throughout the process rather than being just a passive recipient. The child’s family, school teachers, peer groups and the community are significant contributors to the child’s development as a responsible individual and hence all major influencers in the child’s life are significant groups with whom a number of intensive and ongoing programmes are conducted.

Project Anando supports children in the age group 11-18 years through its 3 E approach – (Educate, Empower and Equip for employability). We aim to uplift underprivileged rural children, by reinstating them in schools, empowering and equipping them with skills to live in the mainstream society. The Anando selection criterion – economically backward - orphan, single child, neglected child. Anando Programme, initiated in Karjat with 25 children, now reaches out to over 4000 children across 35 centres. The programme has successfully been replicated in 325 villages of Maharashtra.

 Anando Project Objectives

  • Develop a will to learn and get educated.
  • Develop an ability to study despite lack of continuous backing
  • Build capacity and the quality to face and withstand competition and develop leadership skills
  • Enhance the child’s personality.
  • To ensure that the beneficiaries are suitably equipped for employability that will enable them to lead a life of self sufficiency and dignity.
  • To help beneficiaries assess their own strengths and weakness, explore their potential and the and the either pursue higher education as per their interest or choose a vocational training programme. 
  • Involvement of parents, community & teachers in the child's growth and development 

 

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 Key Components of the Anando Programme includes

  1. Distribution of Education linked material such as text books, stationary, uniforms and bags.
  2. Weekend workshops for personality development and building self confidence.
  3. Intensive counselling and ongoing home visits.
  4. Parent and community awareness and training sessions.
  5. Teaches and peer group meetings.
  6. SFSEP- Student Friendly Supplementary Education Programme addressing special needs in English and Mathematics.
  7. Anant music programme to soothe the mind.
  8. Mahachurcha and Sphurti programme to strengthen preparedness of Std. X students.
  9. Anando Plus supports children in exploring avenues for career choices, higher education and enrolment in vocational guidance courses.

 Methodology:

  1. Desk Research -To understand the existing educational status of the country and the specific region.
  2. Field Research - To visit identified districts and Talukas to gauge level of implementation
  3. Identification of the areas to be included based on the reports of desk and field research.
  4. Orientation & Induction - Orientation & intensive training of new recruited team.
  5. Selection of Schools & Children - Based on the selection criteria already formulated by the organization..
  6. Baseline Study - In order to monitor the impact of the programme.
  7. Actual Anando Programme – As per the implementation Plan .

One social worker is assigned one centre typically comprising of students from 4/5 neighbouring villages. One centre will have maximum 65 numbers of students as beneficiaries.

 Our appropriateness: {Growth of number of beneficiaries from 25 in 2005 to 4000+ in 2012}

Looking at the fact that the secondary education is critical to breaking intergenerational transmission of poverty, LOLT took the initiative and designed the ‘Anando’ Model and initiated its programme in 2005. During these 5 years, the model has evolved through a natural process. Learning’s in different regions enriched the program and success on ground gave courage and inspired LOLT to take this model to more needy children and families to empower them to break the vicious circle of extreme poverty and illiteracy. The model is tested successfully in four different regions with varied socio-eco-geographical background. It is observed that the model is scalable and easily replicable as well economical too.

The Anando Module has been designed by a qualified educationist, our Founder Mrs. Villy Doctor, Head of Department, Psychology, Sophia College affiliated to the Mumbai University.

Over the last 5 years the model has been tested, suitably modified and experimented with and has evolved in the current form as a totally replicable model.

Light of Life Trust is the only NGO to initiate a Programme to reinstate school drop outs between 11 – 18 years in the rural areas and have been the pioneers in this field. The success of our programme is seen in the emerging new generation of confident, high aspiring and motivated young rural citizens is the mark of our continuous efforts with them.

Project Anando works towards accomplishment of our mission as we not only reach out to 3100 children but to their immediate and extended families, local community members, school teachers and concerned authorities and hence we work with the entire community around the child to ensure they make a difference.

 Measurement of Impact

  1. Manthan - The six monthly and annual review  with a focus on enhancement of the programme implementation.
  2. Assessment Post Test (Student): The baseline study to monitor impact of the programme in all areas of work.
  3. Staff Monitoring: Performance appraisals of Staff, Regular Monthly & weekly team meetings.
  4. Financial Monthly reporting – quarterly system of reporting is followed by the organization
  5. Individual work plan for each staff member
  6. Child’s own assessment through “Let us know ourselves” questionnaire

 Expected Outcomes of the intervention

  1. Children, who would have dropped out from schools, not by choice but due to poverty, will be reinstated.
  2. Holistic development through project Anando will help them adjust to varied environment.
  3. They have the guidance to choose careers best suited to them.
  4. These children will escape child labour and break the vicious circle of poverty and illiteracy.
  5. A major leap in the employment opportunities available to the children from unskilled labour to either gets skills required for employment or entrepreneurship.
  6. By intervention with the parents, guardian and community they will understand the value of education and have awareness about various social issues related to their community. Thus, developing more aware and better communities.
  7. Intervention with the teachers in schools helps support improvement in the overall education.
  8. Untapped and unrecognized potential in rural India will be identified, developed which will then shine in a way as to contribute in the national development process.
  9. Children will grow up to be confident, positive, enriched and responsible human beings, capable of contributing to their community and the society at large.

Major Achievements of the Project 

Anando Achievements
  1. Covering 25 students through 1 centre in Karjat to over 4000 students across 35 centres across 5 districts in Rural Maharashtra State in a time span of 7 years
  2. 599 Children appeared for SSC Board Exam in 2012. Percentage of students passing every year is approximately 88 %
  3. Parents involved as active volunteers, parent support garnered so community support available.
  4. With Anando intervention in the year 2011-12, more than 700 students have either joined colleges in different streams; have joined vocational training institutes..
  5. One of our first beneficiary is employed with a corporate house and is earning Rs 18000/- per month. She has initially undertaken training to become an air hostess at the Frankfin Institute in Mumbai
  6. Some of our students have come back to the organization as teachers & Social worker.
  7. Students have trained for employment in Rural BPO and around 35 of them are employed as data entry operators in BPOs in and around Karjat & Khopoli.
  8. Increase in parent support of girls education - In Khandas village where villagers historically never sent their daughters to school after SSC, Anando girl beneficiaries have enrolled for higher education (Bachelor in Computer Applications) in a college in Dhapoli which is around 250 kms away from their home.
  9. 8 girls post their Std XII Science have secured admission for the bachelor of Optometry Course run by the Pune Blind Men Association and are fully sponsored by the Mendonza Foundation.
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