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ABOUT HELPING HANDS FOR INDIA
Helping Hands for India is a charitable organization, managed by a dedicated team of volunteers, who are committed to providing educational opportunities and to promote well being to children in rural India.
We have built a school in the rural village of Pritamgarh, India, where yoga and meditation, play and outdoor education are included along with a foundational maths, science, language and arts curriculum. The school is named Sansar Gyaan Pathshala, which means ‘World Knowledge Lessons’. We can now accommodate 300 children at the school in Grades K to 8th.
In 2009, inspired by our teacher, Yogrishi Vishvketu, a group of senior yoga teachers came together to fund the building and ongoing teaching at the School, in an impoverished area of rural villages and farms, an hour outside of Rishikesh where our Ashram is located.
We are supported by the Anand Prakash Ashram in Rishikesh and the generosity of the Akhanda yoga family and friends.
Rooted in our shared knowledge, we envision a future where ancient wisdom and modern ideas work to create a better world for the children and villages from where they come.
Guided by our Akhanda Yoga heritage, we provide education for children in rural India while being sensitive to, and supportive of, their future, their families, their community and the local environment.
“LOVE & COMPASSION ARE NECESSITIES, NOT LUXURIES.
WITHOUT THEM, HUMANITY CANNOT SURVIVE!
LITERACY IN NORTH INDIA
In Uttar Pradesh, the literacy rate among boys ranges between 60% and 75%, while for girls, it falls closer to 40-50%. Shockingly, 50% of children in North India drop out of school before reaching grade 5.
Within the state of Uttar Pradesh, where our school operates, the average literacy rate is approximately 60-70%.
QUALITY OF LIFE
Literacy is a crucial factor that can significantly impact people’s lives. Literate individuals can be more easily trained and generally have higher socioeconomic statuses. As a result, they enjoy better health and have improved employment prospects.
The value of literacy extends beyond personal development. Literate individuals have increased job opportunities and better access to higher education. A study conducted by the National Adult Literacy Agency (NALA) in 2009 highlighted economic gains not only for individuals but also for the economy and the entire country.
LOWER MORTALITY RATES
In developing countries, literacy rates also play a role in child mortality. Children born to literate mothers in these contexts are 50% more likely to live past the age of five compared to children of illiterate mothers.
Our school serves a community where children come from farming families. As a result, they are often needed at home to assist with work on the family farm, care for elder family members, run errands, and take care of household chores. These responsibilities are one of the main reasons for children being pulled out of school in the state.
However, our school strives to support the community by offering an enhanced curriculum and adapted schedules to increase attendance and promote equality. We believe that education should be accessible to all children, regardless of their family background or responsibilities.
By providing a nurturing and inclusive learning environment, we empower our students to pursue education and embrace their dreams, ensuring a brighter and more promising future for our community.
Sansar Gyaan Pathshala is committed to making a positive impact and bridging the literacy gap in North India. Together, we can empower our children to break barriers and create a better tomorrow.
“Supporting children in India benefits everyone. Not only does it help the children to experience opportunities that were previously not possible, but it helps my own children appreciate and learn to share the abundance that they have in their lives.”
Akhanda Yoga Teacher
“Supporting the education of poor children in India for me has given me an opportunity to make a contribution and give something back. Its too easy to get busy with our lives and only think about ourselves. This contribution to us financially is insignificant but life changing for the child. Knowing that a child is able to get a chance in life because we made the effort is very nourishing to the soul.”
Sleep specialist, The Sleep Guru
"I’ve had the privilege to visit the school a number of times over the last years. After each visit I’m recharged with energy and passion to support the learning of these sincere, joyful and eager kids. In a lifetime of involvement in philanthropy I’ve yet to find a more pure and powerful way to make a difference. "
ABHAY aka STUART LOEWEN
HHFI Board Member
“I am deeply grateful to my Guru Visvha-Ji for giving me the opportunity to support Helping Hands for India. Though my contribution might be modest, I am still incredibly thankful and filled with humility to be able to assist.”
Akhanda Yoga Teacher