When Hon. PM Shri Narendra Modi, in his maiden speech to the Indian Parliament on June 11’2014 talked about 'issue-centric focused activities like education to eradicate poverty', it was if he was echoing, Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation (EVF) mission and its objectives. For past 26 years, Ekal has been providing literacy, health care, and integral development in rural and tribal areas, ensuring their sustainability through empowerment. Yr.2013, also marked 150th birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda, who has been a guiding light in Mr. Modi's life and in Ekal's journey. Noting the vicious cycle of poverty and illiteracy, Swamiji had emphasized, "If a poor child cannot go to education, then let the education go to the poor child." Ekal has been doing just that from its inception. On just a dollar-a-day basis ($365/yr.), Ekal sets up Ekal-school that provides functional literacy skills and health care training to a group of 35-40 young children for the whole year. Currently, there are 54,366 Ekal schools operating throughout rural India, grooming 1.53 million children, half of which are girls. The education is imparted irrespective of caste, creed, religion and region which includes Jammu-Kashmir and Nepal.
On August 15'2014, speaking from the Red Fort, the Prime Minister had stressed, "If we have to build a nation, let's start with villages. No one will leave villages if they are developed." Ekal's 'Gramotthan Yojana' program (Integral Village Development) helps reform the lives of villagers by educating them about vermicomposting, water management and harvesting organic herbs and fruits. As the Chief Minister of Gujarat, Mr. Modi had championed education for womenfolk and had undertaken various indigenous projects for their empowerment. Ekal, on its part, has introduced multiple cottage-industries and conducted free health camps under its 'Arogya Foundation' (Health Foundation)to improve their lives. This holistic approach has curtailed social ills, human exploitation, and migration to urban areas, as envisioned by P.M. Modi. For more focused approach on healthcare, Ekal is soon going to float a separate entity, called 'Health Foundation for Rural India (HFRI)'. On August 16’2014, the Prime Minister launched a landmark 'Digital India' initiative and an ambitious socially uplifting scheme - 'Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojna'. Ekal, is not only educating villagers about these initiatives, but also guiding them to bring them closer to the mainstream populace.Before Mr. Modi unveiled his futuristic vision for educating villagers by stating, "we can have education facilities in villages through satellite", EVF had started hosting 'Power of Education' seminars for the same purpose. It brought together the bright and the brightest minds from Harvard, MIT, Princeton and IITs to explore various opportunities modern technology can afford to improve the quality of education, health care and micro-entrepreneurship in rural areas.
Narendra Modi is the first Prime Minister in Indian history to successfully create a voters revolution in last general election through social media. Ekal, at grass-root level, had played a key role in it by creating non-political awareness among the villagers about their constitutional right to vote in electing a leadership of their choice. This is all part of the local empowerment crusade that Eka has undertaken. Thisreciprocal volunteerism of the Ekal-Model has also caught an eye of the 'Afghan Community' in recent years. In 2014 a team representing socially conscientious volunteers came to India to specifically study and emulate the Ekal-concept for their own tribal-rural villages in Afghanistan. Last year, with the Swachh Bharat (Clean India) slogan, PM Modi had embarked on a new frontier of mass volunteerism. Inspired by his clarion call, Ekalhas launchedan awareness campaign in Ekal villages for clean and healthy environment. For its initial phase, it raised Rs 1 Crore ($170,000), at its 'National Annual Conference' in Cincinnati, Ohio. 'Ekal' had been deeply rooted in Nepal for many years with 1,500 schools in its rural areas.On April 25, this year, when the deadly earthquake struck Nepal, Ekal, unlike any other relief Organization, was immediately able to rush to help out victims with its volunteer teams and its own comprehensive rehabilitation plans. Acting on Mr. Modi's 'help thy neighbor' humanitarian challenge, Ekal, has committed Rs.2 Croresfor Nepal's rehabilitation and partnering there for a long haul.Ekal secliptic progress, has been made possible by thousands of selfless volunteers that work within and outside of India. Ekal draws all its strength from generous supporters like you. Supporting Ekal Vidyalaya is, like stepping out with India's Prime Minister to carve out a better, brighter future for India.Please support the Ekal movement and donate generously. Your personal involvement is very essential. Please donate now generously by visiting our Web www.ekal.org/donate.