While Visions India is not bound by any geographic limitations within India, the organization is focused primarily on serving communities in need throughout the state of Tamil Nadu though the following programs...
One of Visions India’s major initiatives is the Visions e-Learning Program, which is now in its 4th year and continues to be implemented at 6 schools across Tamil Nadu for the benefit of more than 1,000 primary schoolchildren. These students, of which the vast majority live at or below the poverty line, now have access to tablet devices pre-loaded with interactive, self-paced, skills-developing digital learning programs and content. While the content is focused on improving Mathematics and English-language skills, students are also developing much needed technological literacy. Teachers have also been trained in blended learning methodologies (ie: how to integrate use of the technology with meaningful and interactive in- class instruction). Through this initiative, Visions India is helping to reduce the learning gap, develop critical skills amongst students & teachers, and promote academic achievement in core subject areas.
DREAM Youth Leadership Magazine
Every 3 months, Visions India publishes a new edition of the "DREAM Youth Leadership Magazine”—the only Tamil-language publication in the state of Tamil Nadu focused solely on the idea of youth leadership development. Each publication follows a theme, such as Civic Duty, Overcoming Adversity, or Youth Leadership at School. This magazine is a helpful tool in enabling the sharing of stories & knowledge, insights about the role of youth in society, critical educational and personal development resources & opportunities, contemporary and historical examples of strong leadership, educational games & activities, and more. To-date, the first 14 publications have been released, with a few thousand copies printed per each edition and distributed to schools & communities throughout Tamil Nadu.
Learning & Empowerment Program
Another major endeavor, Visions India manages a network of Learning & Empowerment Program centers across rural villages in Tamil Nadu. Collectively, these currently 14 centers serve more than 400 children in providing daily after-school tutoring, mentoring, spoken English instruction (twice per week on average), and Leadership & Life Skills development training (once every other week on average).
Each center is managed by a young adult trainer who is from the community he/she serves. Our 14 young adult trainers (one per village center) receive regular training and support by Visions staff throughout that period. In turn, they provide regular training, mentoring, and support to the children in their villages, as well as coordinate periodic service opportunities for youth to put their newfound skills and talents into practice. Students and parents alike hold each other accountable in ensuring children regularly attend school and after-school sessions. Everyone deserves the right to live their best life, and everyone has the ability to make the world a little better – through the Visions Learning & Empowerment Centers, these youth are doing just that!
Higher Education Support
Bridging the gap between school and either higher education or the working world is a concern of youth worldwide. At the end of 2015, a new initiative – the Visions Youth Guidance & Support Program was launched with the aim of providing a more holistic set of support services to high-achieving youth who find themselves at this critical juncture. Starting with a batch of 9 youth who had participated in Visions’ leadership trainings for the previous 4+ years, we initiated efforts in individualized counseling, test prep, enhanced English-language training, CV drafting, parent engagement, application prep, logistical support, loan procurement, and more. As a result of these efforts, we sent the first 7 girls & 2 boys to university in mid-2016, and another batch in mid-2017. Currently, we are supporting 21 youth at various universities across Tamil Nadu. And we have now seen the first 4 graduate in 2019!
Thanks to an amazing team effort, these students (who are pursuing everything from Aeronautical Engineering to English to Nursing) have been able to tap into various scholarships & support schemes, or access loans when necessary. Visions India provides further support (about $300/year per student) to help them cover entrance exams, living expenses, books, etc.