To spread the pleasure of giving amongst youngsters, Chennai-based Maatram Foundation launched its Santa Kids initiative, that is aptly timed at some stage in Christmas. Co-founder Sujith Kumar poses with youngsters while traveling a faculty as part of Mataram’s Santa Kids initiative. (Image credit: Mataram Foundation)
It turned into 2013. Sujith Kumar, who works at Infosys’ human resources branch, had completed a profession counseling session with university college students in Madurai, Tamil Nadu, while one of the organizers told him about a small toddler waiting outside the hall to speak to him. She had the most effective one query to invite however refused to go into the corridor, so Sujith complied with the peculiar request.
He went outdoors to find a malnourished woman, not extra than 12 years antique, carrying rags, and clutching a massive notebook to her chest. She asked Sujith about getting assist to discover a path that could assure her an activity. He pressed her for more info, and shortly her tale got here flowing out.
Her mom had surpassed away, her father was an alcoholic, and he or she changed into working as a domestic help to fund her schooling and help her siblings. Nevertheless, she becomes an outstanding pupil who had scored top marks in her physics tests.
Sujith becomes fantastically moved by means of her plight, understanding that in his privileged job at a prestigious IT company he may want to truly manage to pay for her education. The next day, Sujith additionally realized that running in human assets had given him a wealth of contacts in faculties and agencies that he never utilized.
In communication with Shradha Sharma, Founder and CEO, YourStory, Sujith Kumar and Punitha Anthony, Co-founders of Mataram Foundation, recall the conversation that set the ball rolling for the organization.
A change inside the air
Sujith spoke to three colleagues at Infosys, along with Punitha Anthony, to assist him to identify students for the 20 seats the engineering college chairman had promised.
Mataram, which means that ‘change’ in Tamil, hasn’t stopped for the reason that, tying up with 35 engineering universities and arranging loose higher schooling for 677 college students from economically deprived backgrounds. The establishments offer unfastened admissions, training prices, meals charges, or even hostel fees, where relevant.
The basis uses an exhaustive five-stage gadget to make sure handiest the deserving get a seat. It keeps the identities of its candidates confidential to focus on their academic benefit as opposed to their economic fame. The agency also trains its beneficiaries on diverse tender skills to enhance their employability and get them equipped for the industry.
Sujith adds that orphaned college students have first preference, in addition to girls, who contain over eighty percent of the beneficiaries.
“We trust that when the female inside the family is educated, the generations to follow will constantly be educated,” he says.
The Mataram family
Today, Chennai-based totally Mataram has an eight-member middle crew comprising operating professionals who balance their day jobs with strolling the foundation. Mataram is present in 5 special states across India, however, Sujith hasn’t dominated outgoing full time within the destiny that allows you to scale up their effect.
The organization has been fortunate in that each one the members’ households have pitched in to help for the duration of weekends, says Punitha Anthony. Getting her son to take part became very critical to her, and every step of the way, spouses, youngsters, and dad and mom all volunteer. Mataram’s youngest volunteer is four, at the same time as their oldest is 92 years vintage.
The enterprise has been open approximately trying to get in new humans, as all of Mataram’s participants play to extraordinary strengths. Sujith takes care of a couple of responsibilities, along with securing university seats and investment. Punitha continues an eye fixed on the teachers of the beneficiaries to make certain college students are doing nicely. Sujith’s spouse operates the Mataram helpline range.