Young changemakers raised INR 400,000 to bridge the digital education divide

Despite the physical stand still that has affected many countries across the globe, life goes on and we must evolve to overcome the challenges exacerbated by COVID-19. Many areas of life have been affected, but one of the most problematic areas is education.

Due to physical restrictions brought about by COVID-19 the new academic year is under way online. But what does that mean for those in rural communities with little or no access to the electronic devices they need to take part in digital learning? The sad reality is that most will fall behind and/or drop out of education which may significantly decrease their quality of life.

As an NGO our (Thinksharp Foundation) vision is to bridge the Rural-Urban education divide in India, and after identifying the above, there has never been a more important time to do so. Our first step to bridge this divide has been the implementation of a model of education called StudyMall which will provide educational tablets to 70 children from grades 4 – 7 in Z.P. School, Gorhe Budruk village, Haveli, Pune. These tablets are essential to promote and enable education in rural areas. They will help them connect with their teachers to attend online classes and will also have a library of 1200 books to read along with other educational apps. This will facilitate engaging study online and offline.

With a progressive initiative like this comes a large funding necessity. The initiative has seen support from far and wide with incredible contributions and awareness raised by other children. In particular we must thank some of The Young Changemakers from Tribes for Good  – Kabir, Pradyna, Pranav, Kashish, Navyashree, Neel, Vansh, Aarnav and Abhimanyu who have raised over INR 400,000 on Milaap crowdfunding platform in order to bridge the digital education divide!

“The project was very enriching. We were able to experience first-hand what social businesses do, what I as a Young Changemaker can do for society, and the sustainable development goal we’re trying to impact. At first, I was apprehensive about how we would fund our campaign. But with the guidance of the facilitators, I was able to overcome this hurdle and raise almost 50 thousand rupees individually. It was also very heartwarming to hear from the Thinksharp team and be appreciated for our efforts.” ~ Navyashree

“I was very much fascinated by the work they (Thinksharp) were doing to bridge the rural – urban education divide. The organisation was introducing the concept of Study Malls to the children in rural Maharashtra by giving access to better educational infrastructure such as digital learning tools, library and other educational resources for children and teachers. I created some creatives and visuals to post on social media and wrote my content so that people can relate to it and know for what cause they are donating.” ~ Kashish

TribesforGOOD is a platform for individuals to learn and take action on ‘real issues’ and due to their unparalleled action to try and solve some of these issues their fundraising will provide 10-15 tablets to provide educational opportunities like their own. Although there is still a way to go, this provides a promising start to an essential initiative!

 

(59)

Fourth StudyMall at Village Chikatgaon launched

With a great sense of achievement and pride on behalf of all Thinksharp Foundation team we announce successful  launch of StudyMall in fourth village “Chikatgaon”.

In the year 2016,  after the launch of third StudyMall project at Village Vangani, we were contacted by one of our local volunteer Mr.Rahul regarding need of StudyMall in village named chikatgaon which is 70 Km from Aurangabad.

Miss. Ashwini Chikatgaonkar helped us in our pre- visit to this Chikatagaon. Miss. Ashwini is an successful lawyer and has her roots from Chikatagon village. She wanted to help her village. We were very impressed by her passion and dedication to work for her improvement of her village.

img-20160521-wa0007
Chikatgaon StudyMall

Chikatgaon is a village where the approximate population is 4000 to 5000 . The educational details of Chikatgaon village is depicted below.

No of schools- 2 Primary 1 to 7th  Secondary 8 to 10 th
No of schools 1 1
girls 112 67
boys 118 80
total 230 147
school timing 9.30 to 4 pm  10 to 4 pm
off day Wednesday  Wednesday

After the visit to Chikatgaon village it was very much evident to all of us that Chikatgaon village children will hugely benefit by addition of more  better educational infrastructure.

We had many discussions and rounds of conference calls, two more visits to discuss on start of StudyMall in this village. We decided to launch Studymall in primary Z.P.School of Chikatgaon village  . It was decided after an intense discussion what will StudyMall provide for initial launch phase to this village children .

We prepared  list of  books, toys, digital classroom and some arts and crafts material to be provided at Chikatgaon StudyMall.

img-20161008-wa0033
Chikatgaon StudyMall depicting books and toys

This StudyMall was launched on 08 Oct 2016 . On the date of launch we were super excited. The journey from Aurangabad was funfilled for all of us. Throughout journey we had constant discussions regarding future of this StudyMall and how to make it  more effective for Chikatgaon village children.

img-20161012-wa0037

The launch was graced by many local dignitaries including  Former MLA Late Mr. Kailash Patil  Chikatgaonkar,  Current MLA Mr. Bhausaheb Patil Chikatgaonkar, and Government representatives Ms.Suman More and many more.

img-20161012-wa0029
Ribbon cut by current MLA Mr.Bhausaheb Patil Chikatgaonkar accompanied by our Founder Mr.Santosh and initiator of this project Ms.Ashwini Chikatgaonkar.

 

img-20161012-wa0012
Thinksharp Foundation team Bhagwan, shraddha and Santosh accompanying current MLA Mr.Bhausaheb Patil Chikatgaonkar and discussing regarding StudyMall.

During the launch of event we distributed prizes.   We awarded two students per  class for being the best students in terms of attendance and grades. The excitement was evident among the children when they received the prizes .

img-20161009-wa0033
StudyMall dedicated local volunteer Mr.Amol Nikam with Founder Santosh and volunteer Shraddha.

On the launch day we also demonstrated how a digital classroom will work and help children to read, learn and understand subjects better. Children also got chance to play with the toys which were placed at StudyMall.

We would like to appreciate our supporters Pratham Books, ToyBank for books and toys donated  by them. Also individual donors, our crowd funding platform www.milaap.org and www.bitgiving.org

 

You can donate and support us too to make StudyMall available in each village of India..

Thanks and keep your Human side up that will keep you smiling….

Written by -Dr.Shraddha M Bhange

Volunteer and Writer for Thinksharp Foundation.

Web- www.ThinkSharpFoundation.org

Fb- https://www.facebook.com/ThinkSharpFoundation

Twitter- https://twitter.com/ThinkSharpFound

YouTube – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC-4cDXLuwAThHXhNOazv5KA

Media Coverage- Click to read recent media coverage on National platform

Donate – https://milaap.org/campaigns/thinksharpfoundation-studymall

 

 

(118)