Yale graduate Amitabh Shah founded Yuva Unstoppable is an NGO in India working in government schools since 2006 to enhance hygiene and sanitation (WASH) facilities as well as bring about behaviour change among the students. It is supported by Amitabh Shah’s wife Mrs Rashmi Shah. Inspired by the vision of Prime Minister of India – Shri Narendra Bhai Modi on Digital India, it has recently implemented a Technology-based Education (or EdTech) initiative called the Digital Classroom programme, aimed at upgrading schools with state-of-the-art learning technology. It presents a unique and successful case of intervention by an NGO in the Indian education sector.
On 24th January 2020, EY (Ernst & Young) and ABPL (Asian Business Publication Trust) hosted a high profile dinner at EY’s corporate office in London, UK for YUVA unstoppable to honour captains of British Asian businesses for their donations to YUVA Unstoppable at the 19th Asian Achievers awards.
At the event, London School of Economics (LSE) – India Observatory that has been writing a case study on YUVA Unstoppable’s impact on the grassroots launched its first chapter. In the study, LSE analysed the context in which the NGO’s digital classroom initiative is deployed, studied its outcomes, and offered insights into the factors that have facilitated its success.
Dr. Ruth Kattumari, founder & co-director, LSE India Observatory highlighted some of the most rewarding outcomes of the study – improvement in learning outcomes across all subjects (Maths, Science, English, etc.) by 4 times more than the control group in schools where Yuva Unstoppable has intervened. It was also noted that the schools with digital classroom only intervention registered a 15.9% rise in student enrolment, roughly 14% hike in student attendance, improved attentiveness, and better & faster understanding of difficult concepts.
In addition to this, test scores of students in all subjects like Math, Science, English, etc. have gone up by roughly 11.5%.
The implementation of the Yuva Unstoppable’s Digital Classroom Programme has a positive effect on the teachers engaged in the programme too. The process of training, adaptation and engagement with Yuva Unstoppable and the equipment provides additional skills for teachers. Additionally, it has also enhanced the overall teaching-learning process and classroom environment.
The programme has contributed to foster inclusion at community level as Yuva Unstoppable operates primarily in inner-city government or government-aided schools that serve students from diverse lower socio-economic strata. Approximately 28% of the schools in the study sample catered to children of labour workers. Farmers, masons, auto-drivers also constituted large groups, ranging from 7 to 9%.
“The very first time I visited a govt. school redeveloped by Yuva Unstoppable was during my India tour last year. And it’s incredible to see how Amitabh Shah and Team are shaping the minds of government school students and community members alike at the grassroots. I have worked with many NGOs over the years and what Yuva Unstoppable does best is to successfully work in different areas of development with multiple stakeholders at the same time. We had to write a case study on one of the finest charities in the country!”, said Dr Ruth Kattumari.
The event was attended by eminent personalities from diverse walks of life like Anil Agarwal (Vedanta Group), Amish Tripathi (Best Selling Author in India and Indian Diplomat), Sanjay Newatia (SKN Advisors), CB Patel (ABPL) and many more who have been key agents of social change with Yuva Unstoppable. It concluded with a panel discussion where children from across India put forward on film their questions for Anil Agarwal and Amish Tripathi about inspirational leaders and the significance of education. What’s more, it helped raise a whopping £250,000 for Yuva Unstoppable’s cause.
“A special vote of thanks to Zishan Nurmohammed, Mallinath Kini, Ruman Sheikh, and the entire team at EY for facilitating the success of this program. Additionally, I’m grateful to Dr Ruth Kattumari for her pioneering work in the field of education, skills and employability in India. To all our partners in change present here, I thank you on behalf of Yuva Unstoppable for your tremendous support and contribution to our cause. We will surely achieve our vision of 10,000 schools with your support”, said Amitabh Shah reportedly at the evening.
For more details on the case study, visit www.yuvaunstoppableforeducation.com