Shanthi Bhavan – a noteworthy Children´s Project in India
Founded in 1997 by Dr. George, Shanthi Bhavan is a U.S and Indian non-profit organisation based in Bangalore withthe vision for alleviating poor and underprivileged children in India. Shanthi Bhavan was started under the umbrella of The George Foundation (TGF), which carries out several other initiatives dedicated to poverty alleviation, livelihood/income generation, education, health, and empowerment of women, such as: community development projects in housing, vocational training and the provision of safe drinking water, social entrepreneurship programs employing poor women in farming projects, and the Baldev Medical & Community Center that serves 17 villages and over 16,000 people.
Shanthi Bhavan’s current boarding school has a wonderful campus in the remote of Tamil Nadu, India, where they mould children from humble backgrounds to take control of their lives and bring positive change to their families and communities. Each child receives 17 years of education, from the age of four until they graduate from college and begin their career. They fully fund the education of these children, provide residential facilities and meals to every child. Stories of kids, who have graduated from this place, are published on their website.
Shanti Bhavan graduates give back 20-60% of their salaries to their families, communities, and other children in need, and have set an example to the rest to dream beyond their current situation. Graduates from Shanthi Bhavan have spread their wings across various domains and ventured to becoming entrepreneurs, authors, engineers and employees at multinational corporations like Amazon, Deloitte, Ernst & Young, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, and Mercedes-Benz.
The team of Shanthi Bhavan consists of visionaries, educationalists and - importantly - compassionate people, who want to make a difference and touch lives of these poor kids in any magnitude they can. The ground team in India is led by full-time faculty, administrative staff and support personnel, who run the school, - with the relentless support of background team in the US. In addition to the support group and teachers, Shanthi Bhavan has an outpouring support from volunteers across the globe. Volunteers here teach classes, tutor students, and lead extra-curricular activities such as art, dance, sports, spelling bee and public speaking. They help planning events, assist with projects relevant to their skills and introduce the children to new ideas and cultures.
Life for low-caste villagers in rural India is still a struggle, as they still experience oppression due to illiteracy, poverty and lack of opportunities. There are many touching testimonials from volunteers and students on Shanthi Bhavan´s homepage, which will touch your hearts. Do look to understand the struggles that are still prevalent in third world countries. If you can contribute in any way, that means with your time, through your money or skills, then do make that plunge and do so.