Thinksharp Foundation team has another proud moment as its achievement this year. Our project “StudyMall” was selected among all the other NGO’s from India to be presented at Sandbox Samvidha, Deshpande foundation.
One of the most exciting and motivational factor for us about this event was a chance to meet Dr.Gururaj “Desh” Deshpande sir. Words might fall short to describe. Dr. Deshpande, Founder of Deshpande Foundation, Hubbali. He has pursued an entrepreneurial career for the last three decades. He is involved either as the founder, a founding investor or chairman of several companies.Dr. Deshpande lives in Boston and serves as a life-member of the MIT Corporation, and he is responsible for MIT’s Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation at Massachusetts. Deshpande Foundation has three other centers. He co-chairs as a National Council to support President Obama’s innovation and entrepreneurship strategy. http://www.deshpandefoundation.org/about-us/founders/desh-deshpande/
The next important factor for our excitement was chance to visit Sandbox Samvidha at Deshpande Foundation Hubbali. Sandbox works to create an effective ecosystem where resources are put to use through entrepreneurship, innovation and sustainability. Sandbox provides opportunities to all NGO teams to meet and interact with each other, to share their solutions to help society and also gives chance to talk to people who have impacted society on larger scale through there NGO, may it be founders of large NGO, Academicians, Sandbox CEO, MD, Support team, Social entrepreneurs etc (http://www.deshpandefoundation.org/programs/deshpande-center-for-social-entrepreneurship/)
Highlight of this trip was location of Deshpande Foundation, the center building and the amazing team. We traveled from Hyderabad and right from how to travel and where to stay we were helped by Sandbox’s team member Miss.Veena. Deshpande foundation is located inside BVB engineering college Hubbali Karnataka. The building is very nice structure which practically creates that sense of positivism once you step in its zone. Many volunteers and Social entrepreneurship students (local and international) can be seen buzzing around who are speaking only one language “how we can help society”?
We presented our story of ‘StudyMall ” in front of three judges Mrs. Neelam Maheshwari Director Deshpande Foundation (http://www.deshpandefoundation.org/about-us/core-team/neelam-maheshwari/) Mr. Sai Chandrashekar from Agastya International Foundation (http://www.agastya.org/ ) and Mr.Rangan Vardhan from Micrograam ( https://www.micrograam.com/.
We presented our idea of StudyMall, how 3 StudyMall are helping approximately 1500 rural children to read, learn and play in 3 villages of Maharashtra . The Judges presented us very thoughtful questions on sustainability and expansion. For the sustainability of StudyMall project ThinkSharp Foundation team answered that we are dependent on donations from our donors and we always plan to keep StudyMall free of cost for rural children. This will ensure they use StudyMall to fullest to read, play or learn. Our answer to expansion plan was that we will start 15 StudyMall in next 5 years. This pace of growth is decided to ensure we help villages or rural areas which are actually in need and where the infrastructure in StudyMall will be used at maximum level by children.
Mr. Sai From Agastya International Foundation was impressed with how StudyMall is helping rural parts of Maharashtra and offered partnership opportunity to work with them to reach more villages. This was a very proud moment to get an offer to partner during the presentation. Thinksharp Foundation team is in contact with Agastya international Foundation and is working on this partnership which will be a huge opening door to help education sector in rural parts of Maharashtra .
ThinkSharp Foundation StudyMall project was hugely appreciated by all the judges, NGO and participants. We also got insights and inputs from Mr.Naveen CEO of Deshpande Foundation on making StudyMall available and more beneficial for rural children.
This opportunity gave us chance to meet Dr.Desh Sir to know about insight into how a social entrepreneur needs to think so as to find the best fit solution to solve society’s problems. Another best thing was to get insight into how Sandbox works. So many people are doing great job through NGO’S to tackle and help our society. But we all can succeed only when we help each other and work together.
With this huge motivation and inspirational event we ThinkSharp Foundation team is geared up to take StudyMall to every needed village of Maharashtra. StudyMall is an more than Library project which provide books, games, toys, digital educational infrastructure, arts, crafts etc to rural children . StudyMall is an library kind of room that we set up independently in village or in collaboration with school.
During the event we also had chance to meet and know about NGO’s who are doing tremendous job of helping society like DATRI working in stem cell donation ( http://datri.org/), Hopefortheharvest which is working in varied sectors to help oppressed and poor (http://hopefortheharvest.biz.ly/) MOTHER working to create opportunities for the poor by building appropriate local-level institutions to improve help disadvantaged section and ensure sustainable livelihoods( http://www.motherngo.org/). For details about all such great NGO please Visit Sandbox Website.
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Thanks and keep your Human side up that will keep you smiling….
Written by -Dr.Shraddha M Bhange
Volunteer and Writer for Thinksharp Foundation.
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