#SalamatRaho presents to you an inspirational and noble story of Srot Foundation in the beautiful Tirthan Valley, Himachal Pradesh. 

The idea  of this foundation was the brainchild of Parth Phalke. Spearheading this initiative are – Panki Sood, Mahima Gir Mehra and Sanket Agarwal. It is a registered NGO in the beautiful Tirthan Valley.

The vision of this initiative is to make education accessible to all. 

Volunteer Opportunity in Tirthan Valley

This initiative provides ample volunteer opportunities in the field of teaching, photography, carpentry and many more while living “Like a Local”.

Our Story:

In July 2020, the Covid-19 pandemic was still approaching its peak in India. The lockdown had been lifted to a degree a month earlier. But schools were not allowed to reopen and they shifted work online. Online school was a struggle for most students. But the struggle was particularly pronounced for poor and rural students. Against such a backdrop, a group of people with backgrounds in education and training, mostly unknown to each other, came together thanks to one common link, Panki Sood and Himalayan Volunteer Tourism, looking to find ways to help students in the Tirthan Valley, Himachal Pradesh. 

After initially looking for teachers who could take sessions for children online and help them actually understand the topics they were studying, it was realised that the medium itself was the problem and hence the solution could not be found through the online medium. Thus, the team set about inquiring into the real nature of the difficulty, searching for the correct responses to the situations and planning a sustainable course of action. 

At first, a support centre called Sunshine was established which soon evolved into a library and activity centre by the same name. But it became obvious that once schools resumed, kids would hardly have time to come to the centre. Due to the various issues with education and learning that had been encountered over the previous 3-4 months it was felt there was also a need for an alternative education set-up in the valley. 

In a span of 5 months the difficulties of online education had led everyone to the questions of what is education and what exactly is it for. In a metaphorical sense, it was like going back to the ‘Srot’, meaning ‘source’, of the river of knowledge itself. Finally, in Dec 2020, Srot Educational Ecosystem Foundation became a registered organisation.

Team NomadLawyer is supporting this initiative. You can be also part of this journey and please read the story to understand more.

About Us:

Srot Educational Ecosystem Foundation is a non-profit initiative dedicated to offering alternative education to the children of the Tirthan Valley, located in the Kullu district of Himachal Pradesh. The project aims at making quality education accessible and friendly by means of alternative, value-based, and constructive education, differing from the mainstream education approach. 

We believe that access to a good education and learning environment is not a privilege but a fundamental right regardless of who they are, where they live, or their background. Srot Foundation works closely with activists, educationists, and volunteers to establish an alternative education space that covers an entire spectrum of Education with a different pathway. 

Summary:

Srot Alternative Learning Center has started its activity center and library during the pandemic to help local children access their academic resources and obtain support for learning while the global education system is hugely affected by Coronavirus. We are seeking funding to construct a space for a learning and activity center with basic amenities so that children can access the best resources, volunteers can offer their time, and activities can be carried smoothly. 

Objectives:

The main objective of this project is to establish an alternative education eco-system where children can thrive by learning beyond the classrooms 

Our secondary objective is to help rural children access better education and facilities that pave the way for better academic performance and career exploration 

Benefits:

The project has already observed active participation of the children and if completed, the beneficiary children will receive:

  • Comfortable study space for their own work 
  • Library space and facility to take books home for reading 
  • Great academic support from the skilled volunteers 
  • Better education and career guidance
  • Screening of inspiring films and documentaries.

Problem:

Located at an altitude of 1600 meters above sea level, Tirthan Valley is one of the unexplored and underrated locations in Himachal Pradesh. Best known as a gateway to the Great Himalayan National Park (GHNP), this hidden gem of Himachal Pradesh appeals to nature lovers, trekkers, adventure enthusiasts, and mountaineers across the world due to its picturesque views and scenic beauty. This increases hopes for great volunteer support and a like-minded community that work collaboratively for the betterment of society. 

At this moment, a small set up has been established with the help of the locals to carry out activities of the learning center and libraries such as reading, functional English, group games, stories sessions, and Music. Online sessions and workshops are also organized periodically to offer learnings on diversified topics. 

Amid the COVID-19 lockdown, around one in three rural children had done no learning activity at all, according to the Annual Status of Education Report (ASER). What is more alarming is that 90% of the population of Himachal Pradesh is living in rural areas and it is the least urbanized state in India. This resulted in limited education sources and a lack of opportunities for better education and learning accessibility. 

Solution:

  • To ease this situation, we aim to build and run a sustainable and alternative education center with a focus on providing:
  • A safe, homely, and comfortable learning atmosphere 
  • A platform where children can identify their skills and competencies under the guidance of volunteers 
  • An education organization with the main objective to provide practical learning, character-development program, and holistic education experience 

Proposal for Financial Support- Incase you wish to Help

Srot requires your generous support in order to proceed. If you wish to contribute you can please reach out to us 

Dear Donor,

We hope you have seen the work that we have been doing and the work that we intend to do. We deeply hope to help students here in the Tirthan Valley by making alternative education, which is usually very expensive, accessible to the students here. For that we need kind donors like yourselves to help us out with our need for funds.

We welcome donations of all denominations, small and large. For small donations, consider donations of Rs. 1000, Rs. 3000, Rs. 5000, Rs. 10,000, Rs. 25,000 or more up to Rs. 1,00,000. Donations from Rs. 1,00,000 onwards will be considered large donations. 

Our expenses include study materials for students, art material, resources for a workshop space and digital infrastructure for students, rent for the premises, salaries of teachers and staff, meals for teachers and students (all students will have one meal (lunch) at the centre everyday), electricity and water bill and basic maintenance of the premises. All these contribute directly or indirectly to the education of the children.

Those interested in making recurring donations are requested to write to us.

Help us help the children here. Your donations will help improve the educational

set-up in the valley.

Thankyou for considering our request kindly.

We believe that the Srot initiative will be a great deal for the students and community. We are excited and optimistic about the response we will get from you people to make this project a reality. 

Should you have any questions or wish to discuss this further, please reach out to us on sunshinelearning.hr@gmail.com

“Photos speak louder a than the words”, we will leave you with the photogallery: