Tax Benefits Non-Profit(NGO)

UTKARSH: Community based Learning Center

IDEA Foundation
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Goal:
₹500,000
Donations:
0
Raised:
₹0
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IDEA Foundation

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About the Organization:
Foundation for Initiatives in Development and Education for All (IDEA Foundation) was established in 2002 with the prime objective of minimizing school dropouts and creating opportunities for the underprivileged children, youth and women in Pune, Maharashtra.

IDEA originated from the findings of a Ph.D. study of our Director, Dr. Usha Pillai on the reasons of school drop-out among underprivileged children, and the perceptions of parents and teachers on the interventions taken by the Government and voluntary sector to address this problem. The NGO was started by a team of experienced social scientist and social workers who realized that a holistic and individualistic approach is needed to address the issues related to school dropouts and to improve the quality of education for marginalized communities.

IDEA has been active in the field of education since the year 2000 in a few slums in the form of remedial classes, awareness programmes and sponsorship support for deserving students. Slowly we realized the need to give them a second chance of learning and enable youth and women to acquire new skills for increasing their employability. Therefore, to provide vocational skills to young people for generating supplementary income, we started vocational courses such as Retail Marketing, Basic Nursing, Tailoring, Home Chef, Catering, Digital Literacy and Beauty care. IDEA has grown from a small size to medium sized NGO in 19 years with a proven record of demonstrating impact across two verticals, education and skill development. We are actively engaged in more than 35 communities in and around Pune and 11 villages around Hinjewadi and Bhor in Pune district, some areas in Kerala and Chennai directly reaching out to 3500 underprivileged children, women and youth every year. Apart from our 5 core programs, currently the foundation is engaged in 8 ongoing CSR projects linked with remedial and supplementary education, sponsorship, employability and income generation. IDEA plans to reach out further by replicating its successful models and best practices in other locations including urban, rural and tribal communities in India.

Issue:
Early stages of education need to be interesting to retain the interest of newly enrolled children from poor families, especially when the child is a ‘first generation’ learner. Similarly inculcating a regular study habit right from the beginning is also important. A clear understanding of basic concepts will lay a strong foundation. Many underprivileged children lose interest in studies and perform poorly or drop out of school. To make education interesting for children, co-curricular activities like exposure visits, art & craft, drawing and activity-based learning should be made as an integral part of education. We need to address all these issues to prevent marginalized children dropping out of school or ending up with poor academic performance. The NGO was started by social scientists and social workers who realized that a holistic and individualistic approach is needed to address the issues related to school dropouts and to improve the quality of education. Due to pandemic 2 study centres were closed as there was no grant. We had to cut down staff of 8-part time teachers and 3 others. Some operational expenses were reduced by vacating a few centres but the children in those study centers need support to continue their education.

Action:
IDEA Foundation is working extensively to educate underprivileged children. Presently IDEA runs study centers in 12 slum communities in Pune. It is an afterschool program for children providing remedial education in Maths, Science and English. The focus is to improve fundamental learning skills in reading, writing, comprehension, languages and maths. To achieve this objective, the foundation runs ‘Learning Centers’ for 1st to 4th std. and ‘Study Centers’ for 5th to 7th std. in underprivileged, tribal, and migrant communities. Using Activity Based Learning (ABL), fun activities like art & craft, E-learning and various educational aids, we ensure holistic development and fundamental learning of marginalized children. Centers are run in poverty stricken areas, the trainers are from the local community to create powerful student teacher connect. Teachers are given training regularly, to help them to understand the special needs of children. We provide school bags and other stationery to children to encourage children to come to school. We aim to reach to 100 children in 2 slum communities in Pune if supported by funding. Many teachers and students do not have smartphones or tablets. This project can bring them in to the mainstream of education under proper guidance and support.

Impact:
Children will grasp the fundamentals of Maths, English and Science and fill the learning gaps left due to various reasons. Exposure visits, art & craft, drawing, sports and other extra curricular activities will bring out the talent unique in each child. They will get a platform to showcase their talent. They will find schooling and learing interesting and aspire to study further in the field they are interested in. They will perform well in exams in their respective schools and take part in various activities. Children who remain absent in school will become more regular and be enthused in school activities. Assessment score, attendance and participation of students will improve drastically in the center as well as in the schools. Number of children in the community below 40% marks will come down. Number of students with higher percentage will increase. Children with learning differences will show steady progress. Drop out rate in the community will decrease and children will become interested in academics.

Project Location(s):
Lokmanya vasti (in Kothrud) and Manjari (in Hadapsar)

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Certificates & Tax Exemption

12A
80G

Donations to this NGO have 50% tax exemption for Indian donors.

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