The American India Foundation and WestBridge Capital announced a four-year partnership to improve access to quality education and better governance of public schools in India. The generous grant of $1 million from WestBridge Capital will enable over 43,500 children from migrating communities in rural Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh, to acquire quality learning and knowledge, giving them opportunities for a better future.
This WestBridge grant will enable AIF’s Learning and Migration Program (LAMP) to achieve significant measurable impact through learning enrichment activities in learning resource centers, thereby bridging the learning deficits of children and improving their learning levels in STEM.
More importantly, the project will leverage government resources by working with anganwadis (government-run rural child care centers) to strengthen foundational learning and hand-hold public school teachers. Additionally, community members will receive capacity building to monitor government-run hostels and look into school governance issues. Thus meeting the UN Sustainable Development Goals, Global Goal 4 of Quality education, and its corresponding target for India to reduce the percentage of out-of-school children, this grant will benefit more than 43,500 children and 25,500 community members in four states of India.
AIF CEO Nishant Pandey said, “I am excited about the impact this funding is going to create on children’s education in some of the remotest rural communities in India, breaking the cycle of poverty and building a brighter future for them.”
Sumir Chadha, WestBridge Capital’s Managing Director and co-founder, announced the corporate gift, saying, “We are proud to support AIF’s LAMP program, which is focused on educating and supporting the children of migrant laborers in India. Providing an education to the children of migrant labor is critical to breaking these families from their multi-generational cycle of poverty. My field visits to AIF’s programs in India convinced me that they are doing a fantastic job on the ground.”
AIF Board co-chair Lata Krishnan said, “It is AIF’s privilege to collaborate with a corporate leader who takes the time and effort to understand the needs of the underprivileged and invests in their future with thoughtfulness and empathy. We are immensely grateful to WestBridge for this grant and look forward to deeper engagement over the next four years.”
LAMP focuses on an estimated 139 million people who migrate from remote villages across rural areas in search of work for up to eight months, often uprooting entire families. Children are forced to migrate with their parents, leaving behind their schools, friends and communities. LAMP promotes universal education in migration-affected geographies, improving the quality of learning and school governance. The program has demonstrated significant success in keeping children in school and improving learning outcomes at grade level.
Through public-private partnerships, AIF continues to make long term sustainable impact in India. AIF’s advocacy work at the state and federal levels have brought together a diverse ecosystem of stakeholders and partners to raise awareness about the lack of access to education, health and livelihoods.
WestBridge Capital is a highly experienced investment firm, managing over $2.5 billion of capital, which focuses on investments in India. WestBridge seeks to partner with some of India’s most promising mid-sized companies run by outstanding entrepreneurs and management teams for the long-term, whether they are public or private. WestBridge Capital leverages both its capital and experience to help companies succeed. WestBridge’s team is one of the most recognized in the industry, and has a combined 50+ years of experience in investing in Indian companies.
About the American India Foundation
The American India Foundation is committed to catalyzing social and economic change in India and building a lasting bridge between the United States and India through high-impact interventions in education, livelihoods, public health, and leadership development, with a particular emphasis on empowering girls and women to achieve gender equity. Working closely with local communities, AIF partners with NGOs and government to develop and test innovative solutions and with governments to create and scale sustainable impact. Founded in 2001 at the initiative of President Bill Clinton following a request from Prime Minister Vajpayee, AIF has impacted the lives of 5.6 million of India’s poor in 24 states.