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From empowering women through self-defence to providing education to underserved students

The feeling of giving back and contributing to society is known to be unparalleled. A lot of individuals and organisations are recognising this and doing their bit to build trust, innovation, togetherness, and engagement within the society at large. 

This week, SocialStory discovered a slew of noble acts being undertaken by people to help those in need. 

Here are the top stories of the week:

Amith Amarnath, Founder, Youth for Parivarthan.

With rapid urbanisation and inadequacies in the local waste management system, public waste bins in Bengaluru were filling up faster than ever. This, in turn, was leading to unclean, filthy spaces.  

Many individuals, such as 27-year-old lawyer Amith Amarnath, have risen to the occasion to rectify the situation. Amith began with a small clean-up drive with his friends at a children’s park in his neighbourhood. After its resounding success, the young lawyer started an NGO called Youth for Parivarthan in 2014.  

In the last six years, the organisation has cleared garbage and uplifted more than 264 places in and around the city. 

Ranjith Mukundan

Ranjith Mukundan, CEO and co-founder, Stellapps.

India is the world’s largest producer of milk, contributing a whopping 19 percent of the global production. Despite that, the country, on an average, produces only 3.85 kilograms of milk per day as compared to more advanced nations.

This is because the sector has been reeling under a slew of inefficiencies. From low production yields, lack of education and training to inadequate veterinary healthcare facilities, as well as improper rearing, breeding, and nutrition practices.

Ranjith Mukundan, CEO and Co-founder of Stellapps, has been at the forefront of leveraging technology to bridge the gaps within the dairy sector. SocialStory caught up with him to understand the challenges faced by small and marginal dairy farmers and the importance of moving towards sustainable animal husbandry practices.

Avneesh Chhabra

Avneesh Chhabra

One of the primary issues resulting from lockdown has been the learning gap that has impacted children of migrants and the rural poor, who relied on schools for their education. To bridge this gap in education for destitute children, social entrepreneur Avneesh Chhabra, Founder and Director of Qause by Mindism Tech, created a digital platform – PassionGuru.

Launched in May 2020, Gurugram-based PassionGuru is a free platform that offers online classes for kids that are served by NGOs, as well as targets disadvantaged teens across India. It aims to nurture the passions of less-fortunate children by collaborating with experienced mentors in different art forms.

Adani Vidya Mandir

Students at Adani Vidya Mandir.

COVID-19 dealt a huge blow to traditional classroom education. As schools and colleges shut down indefinitely, students and teachers had to switch to the online mode to ensure that classes and learning continued amidst the pandemic. 

The shift was smoother in urban regions and for high-end schools, but children in semi-urban and rural regions — with low data accessibility — had to struggle to keep up with their studies.  But, some schools refused to be deterred by the shutdown and the resultant problems. 

Ahmedabad-based multinational conglomerate Adani Group’s private school Adani Vidya Mandir (AVM), which aims to provide cost-free education to students from lower-income families, did not change its academic calendar. The school year began in April 2020 as scheduled. 

Aparna Rajawat

Aparna Rajawat, Founder, Pink Belt Mission.

A poll of 548 global experts released by Thomson Reuters in 2018 ranked India as the world’s most dangerous country for women, ahead of Afghanistan, Syria, and Saudi Arabia. 

To change this, 40-year-old Aparna Rajawat laid the foundation for an NGO called Pink Belt Mission in 2016. Though the NGO is based in Agra, it empowers women from across the country with all the tools required to stay aware, fight violence, and respond to challenges. 

Pink Belt Mission has designed and implemented three different programmes centred around self-defence, education, and vocational training. So far, it has impacted the lives of over 1.5 lakh young girls and women.

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