The 'Daughters of India' initiative, a project led by a group of Indians from within the country and overseas aims to use technology to improve the quality of rural education in the poorest parts of the country.
This effort by the group, who have collaborated with 2 local NGOs with expertise in the area, aims to uplift underprivileged communities, with a special focus on girls. The group has identified 13 of the poorest districts and aim to broaden the pilot to the other school districts in the future.
The initiative is led by Aaryman Mishra, a California-based Indian. He hails from a nearby village and his first-hand experience of benefitting from a good education led him to this initiative.
The challenge prompting the 'Daughters of India' initiative stems from the pressing educational needs in rural regions. The first school to go live is the Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalaya, Itwa village in interior Uttar Pradesh. A school visit to a remote village revealed that only one teacher was available, resulting in limited attention and enthusiasm among students. The scarcity of teachers also hindered the effective delivery of the government's well-structured curriculum, impacting student learning and attendance which had drooped to 50%.
Another significant hurdle is the prevailing notion that discourages educating girls, as parents prioritise marriage and household duties. To address this, the initiative aims to reduce the financial burden on parents and engage them actively in educating their daughters.
The 'Daughters of India' initiative centres on girls because enrolment rates are lowest and dropout rates are highest among them, largely due to parental attitudes. Government data indicates that only 2 out of 10 girls attend high school regularly and proceed to graduation. This statistic underscores the urgent need to empower girls through education.
To address this pressing concern, the initiative encompasses various vital components:
Identifying gaps in educational resources and infrastructure in schools.
Establishing digital classrooms for technology-driven learning.
Engaging parents to gain support for their daughters' education.
Training volunteers to guide and mentor students.
Enhancing teacher training and technological teaching methods.
Regular interaction with parents to demonstrate initiative progress.
Providing career counselling to help students make informed choices.
Offering scholarships to outstanding students pursuing higher studies.
Speaking about the initiative, Aryaman Mishra said, “ The Daughter of India initiative is the consequence of the efforts of multiple stakeholders including the govt, NGO and people from ordinary walks of life who have painstakingly worked towards doing their bit to solve this acute problem."
Vinod Prajapati of Swabhiman Samiti, said, “Swabhiman Samiti is glad to collaborate with KGBV Etawah to unveil the ‘Daughters of India’ initiative. The aim is to empower around 100 deserving girl children from impoverished backgrounds, enabling them to access quality education."
(We are on WhatsApp. To get latest news updates, Join our Channel. Click here)