The most important voices are those that are so rarely heard: The voices of the people on the ground who benefit from the interventions you fund. At iPartner we try to bring their stories to life and donors receive pictures, voice recordings and videos from projects they support. Here are some examples of what your money has already achieved:
Sudha is a 14 year old girl from the small village of Imampur in the Hardoi area. Her parents are poor and instead of going to school she had to help out by working on the fields. Through an innovative program she has been selected to pursue a residential course in order to enable her to join the schooling system for the first time. She says: "I have been keen to go to school since my childhood. With the help of this program I am now finally pursuing my dream"
Our partners have already helped hundreds of girls like her but with female literacy rates still at less than 48%, more help is needed.
Deepti is 16 years old and fled home due to an unhappy marriage. She lost her father at a young age and ever since his death her mother and sister were supported by her maternal uncle. Deepti wanted to continue her education but was forced to marry her uncle when she turned 15 and "work off the debts" by doing all the housework and fulfilling her role as a wife. Her uncle forced himself upon her until the bitterness of the situation made her run away. She was found by the members of a Street Children intervention program at a Hyderabad bus stop. She was taken to a home, given clothes, food, and shelter and is now studying to become a nurse.
One of our partners is an eye hospital that works aims to make the rural Kota district cataract free in three years. In its first year the hospital performed 500 eye operations, in the second year it carried out 1000 more. 65 year old Fateh is the father of a handicapped son and two daughters. His blindness had left him isolated, desperate and unable to care for his family. When the outreach team from the eye hospital went to his village to conduct an eye camp the team assured him that all that was needed was a simple cataract operation This is Fateh after surgery. Once the bandages were removed, he smiled and his first words were - "it is unbelievable that I can see again. Thank you." He now wants to resume farming and is keen to come back to get his second eye operated.
Manorama is one of the girls being supported by a project which offers scholarships for bright, ambitious girls who cannot afford to study beyond GCSE level. The project gives support through monthly scholarships, mentoring and fortnightly workshops.
Manorama is an exceptionally brilliant girl who dreams of becoming an Engineer. She comes from a very poor family whose parents left Uttar Pradesh and came to Delhi in search of work. Her father is a casual worker and the family income is approximately £50 a month for a family of five. Along with her daily chores at home, she also has to care for an epileptic brother. She cycles over 20 - 25 kms every day to get to school where she has won awards for her outstanding academic achievements. Without the intervention of our partner charity, Manorama would have been forced to get married by now and her dreams of becoming an engineer would have been dashed.
In an area where average literacy rate is 23% and the literacy rate for girls/ women drops to an appalling 7%, this unique partner organization has been able to offer basic education to 800 girls in the age group of 10-15 years.
Amra, 14, the girl in the red sweater, says "I always wanted to learn but there was no school here for girls in my village. I thought I would never get the chance to learn to read and write. I do not know how to express my feelings but when the organization started the education program in my village, I was so happy. Now I can read and write. I have also taught my parents to sign and I make sure my brother and sister go to school as I want them to be able to read and write and count like I can. My father has asked me to look after his household expenses and account for the level of milk sold to the milk vendor. I know my father is proud of me and I feel very happy....."
To address the issue of illiteracy in an effective manner and in a remarkably short period of time, an organization based in New Delhi developed an ICT-based literacy tool, which is one of the most effective literacy programmes in the world. Reena, aged 16, is one person who took part in this amazing program. She comes from a poor village in Haryana where her father is a shepherd. Since she was affected by Polio in her childhood, Reena cannot use her legs and is forced to slide herself along on her hands in order to get around. Nether the less she didn't miss a single day of the program and passed her exam with flying colours. With the support of the partner charity her confidence has improved so much that she plans to stand for election as the "Ladies Sarpanch" of the village.
A new program which combines loans and scholarships provides the means for bright ambitious children from poor and lower middle class families to achieve their goal of higher education.
The Secretary and Chief Executive of the organization says: "These children are not less endowed than anyone else and it is inspiring to see how hard these children are willing to work to break out of the trap of poverty"
This program has helped Packiaselvam who is a medical student with an excellent track record of 96% in his 12th standard (A level) exams. His father works as a taxi driver and his mother sells snacks on the street to earn their livelihood. He is highly motivated and is determined to become a doctor. He has the support of his school teachers who are keen to see him succeed. He helps the younger children of the neighborhood by giving tuition and earns small amounts for his personal survival.