Friends for Education International (FFEI), formerly known as “Ambedkar Scholarships” is in its 6th year of operation and growing leaps and bounds due to your trust, support, and generosity.

With a strong belief of getting your continued support, we are expanding it to the areas wherever we think we can help the underprivileged sections of Indian society. For all our activities, please visit our website at www.friendsforeducation.org, www.friends4education.org, or www.abedkarscholarship.org.

 

In brief, currently, we have the following projects:

  1. Regular Scholarships: Scholarships to bright economically backward Dalit children who are bound for college. Each Scholarship costs Rs.5,500 or USD 150. To the mimimium, it consists of a cash award of Rs.5,000, a biography of Dr Ambedkar, and a certificate of achievement.
  2. SCS (Scavenging Children Scholarships): Millions of children live subhuman lives for the mistake of being born in a family that cleans human excreta with bare hands for a living. Generations together suffer in the same profession for lack of other alternatives, if they like it or not. We are trying to help a few of them to get education and thereby to have a human existence. We take the help of gross-root organizations working for them to identify students from these communities.
  3. Helping Hands (Individual Help): Poor but bright children come to us for educational help to do courses like Engineering, Medicine, and Nursing; to enroll in coaching classes for taking entrance examination to various courses; to buy books, a computer, and other school related items. We advertise these requests our website and among our mailing lists. If a donor responds, we help the student with the donations we collect. We also establish donor-beneficiary relationship, if the donor desires so.
  4. Healing Hands (Help to Victims): Help to victims of caste atrocities. Dalits are being discriminated every day for some reason or the other. One in many are reported in Indian progressive newspapers. When we come to know of any such ghastly incidents and if we can establish a contact with the victim, we appeal for help. We   deliver the donated money to the victim through our connections in India.
  5. Microloans: Small loans ranging from Rs.3,000 to Rs.7,000 (US $75 to $175)  is what it takes to help a marginalized family to live an independent and dignified life. We have been giving such loans to start small businesses such as vending vegetables, open tea-shops and grocery stores, buy buffalos and pulling carts to carry loads etc. The project is currently running in 4 villages with 100% repayment rate.
  6. Educational Adoption: We have this project in mind for so long. We have established relationship with a couple of good English medium schools in AP. Through this project, we wish to help children from 1st grade until 10th grade by sponsoring children from economically backward communities. If any donor is interested, we will identify the student(s) and pass complete details. We expect the donor to give us a long-term commitment of providing the costs of fee, books, cloths etc to the child he/she sponsors.
  7. Awards: We give awards to people who made a mark on the lives of Dalits and other marginalized communities. Award money depends on the donations we receive. This year, we have decided to honor Mr Gaddar, famous balladeer singer from Andhra Pradesh.
  8. Libraries: Though we are not directly involved currently, we helped establishing a few libraries in Dalit localities in AP and they are very successfully. I feel happy to hear the readership. The demand is growing and we are getting several requests to start more libraries. We need money, books, and equipment.  If anyone is interested, we will identify the location and provide complete details of the library.
  9. Vocational Training: We have been thinking of starting a sewing training to Dalit girls in a village in AP. We have community hall to start the classes. But we need money to buy machines and to pay salary to the instructor. So, if anyone is interested, we will provide complete details of our project.

 

You can support us in any one or more of these projects. If more details are needed, please send me an email.

 

How are we different from others?

·        Volunteers with similar economic and social background run the project.

·        We update every detail of the project to the donors on regular basis.

·        We publish all our donations/expenses on our website.

·        We match the donor and beneficiary in most of the cases and provide beneficiary information.

·        Scholarships are named after the loved ones of the donor and CofA (Certificate of Achievement) is issued with donor’s name on it

·        We have very negligible overhead costs.

·        We encourage our donor to have a one-to-one relationship with the beneficiary by providing all details.

·        Currently we do not have any organizational support. We depend entirely on individual donations.

 

If anyone is interested and have more questions, please visit our websites at www.friendsforeducation.org, www.friends4education.org, or www.ambedkarscholarship.org, or write to me at benjamin_kaila@yahoo.com.

 

Looking forward to hear from you.

With regards

Benjamin Paul Kaila