Stories of Change
Educational Scholarship Program
Izma Banu Saiyed from Baroda, Gujarat was brought up in a typical middle class setting. While her father is a teacher in a small school, her mother is a housewife. Though acutely aware of her family’s financial condition, Izma was never complaining and instead had always learnt to appreciate the little pleasures in life, largely inspired by her mother’s never say die spirit. She aspires to become a doctor and studies 18 hours a day to make her dream come true. Her hard work finally paid off when she scored 99.99% in HSC Science & topped Gujarat in 2019.
Vaishanavee is the daughter of a humble clerk. Due to malnourishment & vitamin deficiency, her right hand stopped functioning as she entered grade XII. But this did not discourage her to forget her dreams or strive to make them come true. She soon learnt to write with her left hand despite being right-handed. It was not easy but Vaishanavee was courageous and determined to make it work. Her commitment & optimism finally bore results when she scored 99.99% in 12th Commerce and was among the top 12 topper of Gujarat in 2019. She wants to become a C.A and is a source of inspiration for many students of her age.
Mohit dreams of becoming a C.A. But he lost his father due to cancer. His mother, who is the sole bread winner of the family, took up tailoring to make ends meet after his father’s demise. She barely makes INR 5,000 per month. Although this is not enough to support Mohit’s dream education, he is determined to stay focussed and not let financial shortcomings come in the way to his dreams. He scored a whopping 95% in 12th HSC Commerce and when asked about his aspirations, shared that he wishes to visit a foreign country atleast once in his life.
Keyur Mistri cleared CA Foundation exams and is preparing for IPCC. His family consists of father, mother, grandparents, and two sisters. His father is a carpenter with a highly unstable source of income. At times, he doesn’t get any contract for months together. But Keyur’s family is very supportive and has taken loans to support his education. Due to the space constraint at home, he goes to his aunt’s place to study as he is determined to become a CA. Despite the financial difficulties, his parents never let him feel the burden and motivates him to focus on his studies.
School Transformation Program
After the creation of Smart Classroom, Ketan, a 6th grader from govt. school in Gandhinagar started liking his classroom ambience and the teaching methodology. As he had access to online material, it helped him work better on his science project. He has also started using PowerPoint, Word, Google Search Engine, Gmail and other online & digital tools for classroom assignments and exams. His interest level in studies grew and started liking coming to school.
The Google Future Classroom in Education course has worked wonders for the school teachers of Barve Nagar 6 BMC School, Mumbai. It has enabled them and their students to become familiar with a number of tools like Presentation, Sheets and Form on the Google Application to use in my classroom. The online and digital content explains everything and an amazing smart board that can be used to introduce a new concept to students. Google Document can be used for both the teacher and the student to create educational content to share. This has helped in increase in the student’s attendance and improved learning. We thank Yuva Unstoppable for the intervention, making classroom learning interactive and fun.
Barmer, the 2nd largest district in Rajasthan, is no exception to the state’s abysmal levels of literacy. This is because the state of basic sanitation facilities in government schools is largely poor. There were no separate, hygienic toilets for boys and girls, the flooring and drainage condition was not good, there was common drinking water and dishwash area, the walls and exteriors of the school building were pale and worn out, and there was no multipurpose shade for the students to eat MDM, pray or play in the schools. This had many serious repercussions. Children – and particularly girls – often avoided or dropped out of schools due to lack of these basic facilities. Unhygienic drinking water led to water-borne diseases like Diarrhea, etc. Yuva joined hands with Cairn India to transform 28 schools of Barmer District, Rajasthan from 2017 to 2019.
Other Programs & Initiatives
Hundreds of construction workers near MRF tyres site, Dahej have migrated from northern states in India like UP, Bihar, Jharkhand to Gujarat in search of better source of income. Due to the COVID-19 induced lockdown, these daily wage labourers were one of the worst hit as their source of income was lost. With state borders sealed and discontinuation of all forms of transportation allowing inter-state movement, these labourers could not return to their hometown. This worsened their plight; they were forced to stay behind with little certainty about future conditions. Poor, hungry, and vulnerable, they were at great risk of falling susceptible to the deadly virus due to lack of availability of adequate prevention and personal protection equipment like food, sanitizers, etc. This is when CAF and Yuva Unstoppable intervened to provide them with the family essential kits consisting of food plus preventive materials. It brought about great relief for these labourers and their families who were staying together. During the distribution, all precautions were taken to make sure appropriate norms of social distancing and personal protection are followed by the volunteers at the site who undertook distribution as well as the NGO’s representatives who supported procurement, assembly, and timely delivery of the kits at the diverse geographies.
An HIV centre in Ahmedabad is home to more than 400 HIV positive children, most of who are orphans or neglected. In some of the cases, their family members are also HIV positive and struggle to make ends meet. They are children of daily wage labourers whose life has come to a standstill due to the outbreak of COVID-19 and lockdown. In the times of this global pandemic, these children and their families most need adequate nutrition so that they do not suffer from side-effects of their regular medicines. However, due to the loss of their only source of income for the house, they often have to go without two square meals a day.
Priya & Pranjal, 8 and 10 year-olds respectively, are two girls from this centre who are HIV positive. They lost their father a year back. They stay with their mother and grandparents in a one room house. Their father, the sole breadwinner of the family, was an auto rickshaw driver. After he passed away, their widowed mother had to become a daily wage labourer for survival. She works from morning to night only to make a meagre income that can neither fulfil their basic needs nor support the education of her two daughters. They eat at their relative’s place and Priya, despite being an 8-year old, is still in Kindergarten because of absenteeism due to illnesses. What’s worse, the family is indebted with the loan Priya & Pranjal’s father had taken for the auto. And now, even the daily wage work has come to a halt.
Yuva Unstoppable provided family essential kits to 50 children from this center, of which 22 are orphans. These kits were distributed taking all due precautions avoiding close contact, keeping safe distance.