The Community Services Wing of the Foundation works intensively with communities in all its project areas to improve the quality and access to education. Initiatives range from running Bala Badis (pre-schools), to working with government schools, to supporting meritorious children. The Foundation also works with children of migrant labour. GMRVF encourages the holistic development of children through supporting co-curricular and extracurricular activities. A special focus is laid on coaching Government school children for various entrance and eligibility tests. With such coaching support, many children have got admission to Navodaya and Ekalavya schools and excellent higher educational institutions.
Many longitudinal studies reveal that education alone has contributed to poverty reduction in a sustainable manner. However, ensuring quality education to every child of the country has been a great challenge.
Many students in the communities where Foundation works are first generation learners and GMRVF strives to support government schools to meet the needs of these students. Some of the challenges these schools face are low student-teacher ratio, lack of quality infrastructure, teaching and learning material, etc.
The Foundation strives to ensure children in its target communities are able to access quality educational experience. The objective is to supplement the Govt. education system. GMRVF's educational interventions are primarily aimed at filling gaps in an existing govt program , that will make it more effective and outcome oriented.
Mamatha lives near the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport. Her father Anjaneyulu is differently-abled and runs a petty shop at home, while her mother works as a wage laborer. Mamatha was selected under Gifted Children program by GMRVF. She was admitted into GMR Chinmaya Vidyalaya, Shamshabad. She is now in Std. IX.
"Initially I felt nervous at the school as I was unable to follow English which teachers and other students spoke, but the teachers and GMRVF staff supported me to overcome my inhibitions and made me self-confident" she says.
Mamatha excels in academics and is also good at painting and sports. She aspires to become an IAS Officer and serve the poor and needy!
Meet Aakash who lives in Savda, Delhi. He was once a very shy and reticent child and used to feel nervous to ask his teachers about his doubts, to face exams and even to speak in front of a group. But that was history now! GMRVF motivated young Aakash to join the ASLC Programme. Aakash started attending its curricular and co-curricular activities.
His achievements here improved Aakash's self-confidence and he never looked back. His confidence spilled over to his regular academics too. "Pahle mein khul ke bol nahin pata tha, ab mein kisi bhi jagah aatm-vishwaash ke saath baat kar leta hoon aur school mein sawal poochhane mein darata nahin hoon. Mujhe ab exam se bhi darr nahin lagata hain" (Earlier I was unable to speak freely but now I can speak fluently in any forum. I can now confidently ask questions in school and face examinations as confidently), says Aakash reflecting the same confidence in his words.
Ravi Kishore hails from a poor family in a village near Rajam of Andhra Pradesh. His father works as a daily wage laborer and his income is hardly sufficient to meet the household needs. Ravi passed his intermediate examination with more than 90% marks and dreamed of becoming an engineer. However, poverty forced him to settle for a normal degree course. Recognizing his interest in Engineering Education, GMRVF staff and teachers encouraged him to join B. Tech (Civil) in GMR Institute of Technology. Through its MOU with Andhra Bank, Foundation facilitated Rs 1.20 lakh loan from the Bank, beside provided Rs 38, 000 as interest free loan.
Ravi completed his B. Tech in 2010 and joined an aluminum unit at Vizag as a trainee engineer. Ravi is now happy in being able to share the burden of his father and thanks GMRVF for supporting him in realizing his dream.
Bharti Verma was born in Raikheda village, Chhattisgarh and is part of a family of 5. Her father supports the family by undertaking agricultural labour. On completing her secondary education, she considered staying at home and helping her parents with housework since the closest college is 20 kms away.
GMR Varalakshmi Foundation observed that like Bharti, other girl children from Raikheda and nearby villages opted out of higher education because commuting to college was difficult. Apart from families being unable to afford the high college transportation fees, they were also worried about safety and security.
For these reasons, since 2010, GMRVF has been providing free college transportation facilities for girl children from 4 villages. Until now the initiative has helped 285 girls complete their graduation. Bharti was also able to finish her B.Sc. and is currently working in a government school. Her parents are also extremely happy that their daughter is the first family member who is a graduate.