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A non-profit organization established for education and uplifting underprivileged children, one child at a time, Parikrma Humanity Foundation, is the Career Change Makers Award 2021 “Top Career Development Cells (School)” award winner.
Founded by Shukla Bose in 2003 with just 165 students initially, this Bangalore-based foundation now has 4 branches spread across the city with over 2000 students from 105 slum communities and 5 orphanages.
In Sanskrit, Parikrma means “to complete a circle”. This defines the foundation’s end-to-end (e2e) approach to the care they give to the children studying at Parikrma. From the time the child is admitted in kindergarten, until they get a job, Parikrma looks after them. This way, they help the children break out from the “cycle of poverty”. In the foundation’s words, they refer this to as “completing the Circle of Life.”
Along with education based on the CBSE curriculum, the foundation focuses on all-round development of a child. The children are provided three meals each day, full healthcare, including frequent health check-ups, vaccines, and counselling. Co-curricular and extra-curricular activities like sports, art, music, drama, dance, and global exposure are also taught. Many students of the foundation attend the Global Youth Leadership Summit in San Diego every year. The teachers who work at Parikrma were in the British Council Global School Exchange Program. As part of their training, this program requires them to visit schools in the United Kingdom.
To ensure children have a family-friendly environment at home too, community assistance for parents is also provided. De-addiction programs, women’s empowerment, vocational training, wellness seminars, and other such initiatives have been taken.
After the schooling of a child is over, the foundation’s Final Leap program helps students to select the appropriate professional degree based on their interests and abilities. The program also provides scholarship for college education or vocational training. The Last Mile program assists students adjust to their first year on the job by pairing them with a professional mentor.
Graduates of Parikrma are making a change in their lives, and in the society too. A Cisco Systems software engineer, a Manipal Hospital dialysis therapist, a Hilton assistant chef, a student pursuing law at the prestigious National Law School, another doing biotechnology at MS Ramaiah Institute of Technology, a dentist, a marathoner, a digital designer, an activist, an avid blogger, an actress, entrepreneurs, artists, social workers –– the list continues, and is diversifying every year.
The education model followed and impacts Parikrma made have been cited in three international journals. One of the most notable achievements of Parikrma is that the foundation has the greatest attendance percentage in the country (96%), along with the lowest drop-out percentage, at less than 1%. in the year 2020, the foundation has also been given the award “Great Place to Work”.
The foundation continues to expand its activities through Community Development by social workers and Education Transformation Centre (ETC). ETC is an initiative to create and offer teacher training modules to teachers, workers of other NGOs, school administrators and social worker and reach 60,000 more children.
Parikrma has also adopted five government schools by signing a MoU with the Government of Karnataka. Their objective is to make a difference in academics, by focusing on children’s overall growth in government schools. Ever since this initiative, a rise of 60% and 80% in enrollment, and Parent Teachers Meeting attendance has been seen.
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