Working towards betterment of communities in remote villages is one of the many ways through which grass root impact can be made. Although, there are very few organizations and foundations that align with this vision, and a lot still needs to be done in the country in this direction.
Aahwahan foundation is one of such not-for-profit foundation working relentlessly towards this and changing the face of remote Indian villages. Bengaluru-based Aahwahan Foundation works Pan-India towards the upliftment of villages and focuses on development across key areas such as education, healthcare, financial knowledge, etc.
The key development areas on which it works includes empowering local village women through SHGs, developing medical and educational infrastructure, as well environment and community development.
So far, the foundation has adopted 100+ villages in the states of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, and Odisha. Further, it aims to adopt 5 new villages every year.
With regards to women empowerment, they are helping rural women get skill-based training and entrepreneurial training to take to rural crafts or help them hone their special skill by helping them with necessary infrastructure, enabling them with digital knowledge via 'Digital Sakhi' programme to make them financially independent.
In the field of education, the organisation is adopting government schools, colleges and Anganwadi and developing its necessary infrastructure, which includes classroom construction, laboratories, sanitation and drinking water facility. These efforts have seen remarkable results in the dropout rates of students reducing marginally.
Empowering Marginalised Communities
In a conversation with The Logical Indian, Braja Kishore Pradhan, founder, Aahwahan Foundation, said, “The organization is committed to bringing about a paradigm shift to the NGO space through their selfless and sustained service to restore the socially backward community’s dignity. At Aahwahan Foundation, we are increasingly committed to delivering real, sustainable solutions to the requirements of marginalized communities, transitioning from a traditional philanthropy model to one of the genuine partnerships in which we use the talents and resources acquired through collaboration to optimize our impact. One of the ways we use the skills is through good governance.”
The foundation is associated with more than 300 corporations throughout the country that believe in its causes and support its different programmes. It is also collaborating with various charity organisations aiming towards the betterment of society.
Pradhan further told The Logical Indian, “Aahwahan Foundation believes for our country to grow development at the grassroots is a must. It is every individual’s right to get equal opportunity to live a good life.The foundation is working on five domains - Education, Health, women empowerment, Environment and Community Development. Among all its factors, lakhs of people are getting benefitted through its various initiatives and ongoing programmes targeted for their development."
Talking about his journey, Pradhan, mentioned I that it wasn’t easy, but the foundation was able to positively influence the lives of people over a period.
The foundation’s recent initiative, ‘Education on Wheels,’ uses the newest technologies in education to help the children get first hand experience of virtual learning. These vans are equipped with material in a way to help children choose STEM learnings, robotics and science learning for which most of them cannot afford expensive books, material and tuitions.
The idea is to help the students also prepare for necessary exams like NEET. All of this is arranged in a bus which is made to travel through rural areas in order to make education available and accessible for everyone.