"My National Flag flies in my heart and I will bring glory to my Nation." - Guru Kalam

Inspired Indian Foundation

I MISS LONG TELEPHONE CALLS WITH KALAM: DR NASEEMA MARIYAKAR

By Dr Anantha Krishnan M., JUL, 2016

The Inspired Indian Foundation (IIF) is the brainchild of a group of people who make a living out of writing. Most members work in the media and communications field with a passion for and commitment to propelling India’s future flights, the underlying belief being: ‘If India has to change, WE must change first’.

The soft launch of the Foundation on 14 April 2008 was sans glitz, blitz, microphones and speeches. Two boat drivers, Rajesh and Prashant, launched the Foundation activities in the placid backwaters of Kerala, as curious villagers looked on.

Interestingly, Rajesh is a BA Economics graduate who became a boatman to support his family. In 2009, the Inspired Indian Foundation was registered under the Indian Trusts Act, with the charter of celebrating unsung heroes.

Operating from the rented premises of one of the founding members in Bengaluru, IIF launched its first project in 2009 with A Different Spirit, an inspiring biography of wheelchair-athlete Dr Malathi K. Holla.

Since its inception, the IIF has kept its activities away from the publicity radar, with the sole aim of focusing on charity work at the ground level, sans noise. In 2014, at the first Annual Inspiring Indian Foundation Awards ceremony, 10 achievers from various walks of life were honoured.

In the second phase of its expansion plans, a government primary school in Bengaluru has been adopted under Project Pathshala. The Foundation supports various needs of 60 children in this school.

In November 2015, the Foundation was tasked with re-launching Guru Kalam’s e-paper, Billion Beats. Guru Kalam appointed Dr Anantha Krishnan M as the Editor of Billion Beats in 2007 and he continues to lead the team in an honorary role.

Project Pathshala

After months of scouting around, we have zeroed in on a Government Primary School in Bengaluru's New Thippasandra area, to launch our quiet campaign. On July 12, 2014, we formally adopted the school on a pilot basis.

The school is situated next to the famous Rama temple in one of the busy lanes of New Thippasandra. At the school started way back in 1959, the medium of instruction is Tamil, though Kannada and English are also taught.

There are five classes – from Std. 1 to Std. 5, with a total strength of 50 students. All students are from an extremely poor socio-economic background. The school has three classrooms and the mid-day meal is provided by ISKCON.

“Every student here is the son or daughter of a maid servant, vegetable vendor or daily wager. Some students are sent to school straight away from their bed," says school headmistress Mrs. Kalavathi N.

After studying the requirements of the school and the students, the Inspired Indian Foundation has identified six key focus areas to start with:

  • Personal hygiene
  • Physical fitness
  • Healthcare
  • General knowledge
  • Confidence building
  • Public speaking.

Step by step. One at a time. That’s how we plan to implement our action plan. For more details, visit: http://www.inspiredindianfoundation.org/

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