Within India there are many students who are unable to continue their studies after the 10th standard due to lack of funds, despite the fact that they have scored exceptionally well. These students are the children of labourers, small scale farmers, domestic workers and weavers. They may be orphans or part of single parent families. These are students who have the potential to achieve highly but who without funding would be forced to give up their dreams and follow in their parents footsteps.
The Help A Child To Study Project was established by Shri Samir Somaiya in 2002 under the auspices of Somaiya Vidyavihar Trust to assist these students to complete their higher education and achieve their dreams. Scholarships are given to the students for courses after the 10th grade and covers a variety of courses right from junior college up until medical and engineering.
Help A Child does not discriminate between students based upon caste, religion or gender. The only criteria for sponsorship is the student's own poverty and that they have scored highly in their studies, above 70% for girls and above 75% for boys. The students have thereby already shown their potential to succeed within education and that they have the enthusiasm to do so.
In terms of child sponsorship programs in India, Help A Child is largely unique. Most programs operating here focus upon the young child, supporting them only until the age of 16 or 18. While these programs are aimed at alleviating poverty, something extra is needed in order to break the poverty cycle for the child and their family. Help A Child firmly believes that further education is the most powerful way to lift families out of poverty by enabling them to stand on their own feet by using their own knowledge and talents. Since Help A Child's inception more than 770 students have been sponsored for their education. Godavari Biorefineries remains Help A Child's largest sponsor and is committed to improving the futures of these talented young students.
For more information on the organization and on sponsoring a child, visit: http://www.helpachild.in/