AIM for Seva

Focus: Disability, Education, Health, Rural Development, Children and Youth

WHEN a child's education is governed by distance to school, lack of learning support and issues of extreme poverty, just providing classrooms is not enough. AIM for Seva's free student hostels tackle all these.

It took founder Pujya Swami Dayananda Saraswati only a year to put into action his learning from his initial visit to the hills of Anaikatti, Kerala.

Just his simple question of, "What help do you need?" prompted an elderly resident to tell him about the 7km long and unsafe walks through the forest that children have to take in order to reach school, often resulting in them dropping out.

She also pointed out that the chances of remaining in school for children of farmers, construction workers, domestic helpers and daily wage labourers are made even slimmer because of additional responsibilities imposed on them at home. From that first interaction stemmed the idea of setting up free hostel facilities close to schools where children can live and easily attend classes.

Now, 17 years later, AIM for Seva headquartered in Chennai, have 95 free student hostels across 16 states, giving 3,700 children mainly in rural India better access to schools.

But that's not all. Ensuring food and accommodation only solves part of the problem. The hostels also provide after-school support, academic coaching, extra-curricular activities and health awareness so that the children can learn and grow in an overall nurturing environment and become their best selves.

It is clear that their efforts are very effective – last year in 2016, their children achieved 90% pass rate in their 10th standard public examinations, and 89% of the children passed their 12th standard public examinations.

24-year-old S. Sampathkumari joined their hostel in Sembangudi, Tamil Nadu, in 2008 and successfully completed her schooling and college with support and coaching from AIM for SEVA.

She says: "My parents are daily-wage earners and sent me here as it was difficult to continue my education. Today, I work as a graphic designer for a company in Erode and support my family and my younger brother's education."

Besides providing free hostels, AIM for SEVA runs schools, non-formal education centres and skill development initiatives for women, a home for differently-abled adult men and health care centres.

Support them as they continue to expand their efforts across the country.

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CURRENT PROJECTS
Schools

AIM for Seva also run three schools in rural Tamil Nadu which provide a conducive environment for learning and impart quality education with an emphasis on the holistic development of a child. These schools, catering to nearly 1,200 children from the local community, focus on fostering the academic, non-academic, artistic and creative abilities of the students to help them develop as individuals with vision and resourcefulness.

Free Student Hostels

THIS is AIM for Seva’s signature project. These free student hostels provide accommodation, food, clothing and academic coaching for children from rural and tribal communities where 8,000 hours a year are spent on guiding, nurturing and transforming each child to become confident individuals. There are more than 95 such hostels across 16 states in the country. Built close to government schools, they currently house 3,700 children. The cost of caring for a child for one month is ₹2,500.

Krupa Home

LOCATED in Sriperumbudur, Tamil Nadu, the Krupa Home is a residential facility for differently-abled adult men. Here, AIM for Seva provide its 35 residents with life-long care and constructive assistance to make them feel valued members of society. Here the men learn activities such as weaving, gardening and craftwork which help develop their motor skills and hand-eye coordination. Just ₹10,000 will support one resident per month or ₹1,20,000 for the whole year.

About AIM for Seva
Testimonials

I have become self-reliant and am now making a living for myself through tailoring. If I had not enrolled in this vocational training centre.... I am certain I would not have been able to find a decent job with my qualifications.

Kushi Joshi, Sewing Training Centre trainee, Dehradun

Our son Rajagopalan is 32 years old and we enrolled him at Krupa Home over one year ago... We love our son, but enrolling him at Krupa Home has been a relief for us and changed things for the better for him.

R. Balasubramanium, father of Krupa Home resident, Chennai

These children are from very poor families; they dream of becoming a doctor and engineer in their lives. The free student hostel has bestowed them with a belief that they can achieve anything in life.

Somnath Choudhari, volunteer, Belgaum

THE TEAM
  • Sheela Balaji Chairperson & Managing Trustee
  • Arvind Balaji Trustee