Vidyadhan educational scholarship initiative goes pan-India; adds 3 more states

• Amitabh Kanth IAS, G20 Sherpa, lauds the Vidyadhan-UST partnership model for social impact
• stakeholders and beneficiaries share thoughts on the prestigious programme at ‘Partnerships for Social Impact’ event.

Thiruvananthapuram: Vidyadhan, a Shibulal Family Philanthropic Initiative set up by Kumari Shibulal and S D Shibulal to provide funding, mentoring and life skill training to meritorious students from disadvantaged backgrounds to pursue higher education, will expand its presence in as many as 15 states this year.  The addition of three new states, Bihar, Jharkhand and Punjab, will open the gateway for higher education to more.

A record of over 40000 applications has been received for the 1600 new additional scholarships on offer this year. The number is expected to go up further since the application process is yet to close for some of the states.The “Each One, Teach One,” model brings sponsors and students together in a transparent and accountable system. One such successful partnership is with UST, a digital transformation solutions company that doubled its contribution to support more students covering more states.

A one-day event titled “Partnerships for Social Impact” organized by Vidyadhan on October 8, 2022, Saturday, at the Hotel O by Tamara in Thiruvananthapuram.  The event was attended by Vidyadhan stakeholders and beneficiaries, who shared their thoughts on the prestigious programme. According to Amitabh Kant IAS: “The government, corporates, and individuals, all have a role to play in developing programs that create social impact. I am very glad to see such a partnership between UST and Vidyadhan who are working together to transform the lives of hundreds of children through education.”

According to S D Shibulal, Trustee, Sarojini Damodaran Foundation, which spearheads Vidyadhan, “we thank UST for their belief and support in the Vidyadhan program even during tough times. We are fortunate that like-minded people have joined us in this endeavour and there is a visible impact on the ground.”

Many of the students who have completed their education have gone on to work in prestigious institutions from TCS, Infosys, HCL, UST, Bosch, KPMG, MRF, UNISYS, MBB Labs, Government Offices, Defence Forces, etc. Several others are pursuing Master’s education and Research in prestigious universities. Besides, the Vidyadhan girl scholars have also been breaking societal stereotypes by becoming primary providers for their families and becoming role models in the community.

In her opening address on “The importance of Giving” Managing Trustee, Kumari Shibulal, said: “Our scholarship initiative, Vidyadhan is not just a programme – it is an idea that an individual can make a difference and that a group of individuals can make a much bigger difference. My sincere hope is that all the beneficiaries can keep the “cycle of giving” going by helping others when they are in a position of doing so. That will be the biggest dividend for Shibulal and me”.

In his keynote address, Krishna Sudheendra, CEO, of UST said: “Finding the right implementation partner is key to the success of CSR initiatives.  Vidyadhan’s ability to scale fast, as well as the transparency brought in by the zero administrative cost model, provides a comprehensive view of the student beneficiaries, which is what makes them stand out. Our employees have actively volunteered to mentor the Vidyadhan students which strengthen the bond further.”

Archana Vijayan, an MBBS student from Kottayam medical college who embodies the will to win of Vidyadhan students, spoke of her difficult journey to get into a medical college because of her physical disability. “I realized that no one can stop me from my dream of becoming a doctor until the fire inside me was extinguished. The concept of caring and sharing provided by the Vidyadhan family helps us bond better. I can proudly say that I will also become a sponsor for Vidyadhan students in the future” said Archana.

Meera Rajeevan, National Program Director of Vidyadhan, spoke about how the student-centric Vidyadhan Partner Ecosystem delivered value to all stakeholders. Prof. S Ramanand, Trustee, SDF, welcomed the gathering and shared the journey of Vidyadhan over the years.  Shruti Shibulal, Trustee, SDF, while offering the Vote of Thanks, appreciated the role of UST, the Vidyadhan team, volunteers, and the students in building a partnership that has helped in transforming several lives through education.

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