In collaboration with IIMA (Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad) and Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) the Company has undertaken a CSR project in promoting education for underprivileged students namely “SMILE- Community outreach for educating underprivileged Children”, where SMILE stands for “Student Mediated Initiative for Learning to Excel”. Volunteers from within the student community of IIM/other colleges along with outside hired teachers are teaching/mentoring underprivileged/dropout children at SMILE mostly hailing from urban slums area of Ranujanagar, Jodhpur Gam and Vastrapur Gam of Ahmdabad. The project site is situated beneath the IIMA Junction Flyover in Vastrapur, Ahmedabad, on a leased space provided by AMC on a token rent for this noble cause. The Company has contributed Rs. 50 lakhs during 2014-15 towards this project.
The purpose of project is to prevent dropout rate of underprivileged students studying in government/municipal schools in 7th to 12th classes. Project also envisages vocational, counselling entrepreneurship development and other activities for the empowerment of children and youth.
SMILE school is comprised in two classrooms adequate to accommodate about 60 students at a time with benches, white boards, soft boards, cupboards and other necessary furniture. The activity area consists of computers, fully functional library with collection of more than 1000 books from IIM community and outside, games, drinking-water-cooler and toilets with proper water supply.
Extracurricular activities carried out at SMILE include movie screening, yoga sessions, origami sessions, arts & crafts sessions, painting sessions, posters making, session on hygiene and sanitation etc. Festivals like Independence Day, Navratri, Diwali, Christmas etc., are regularly celebrated. Students also have opportunities to meet different personalities from various fields, which included a dignitary like Hon’ble President of India Shri Pranab Mukherjee. SMILE students are also exposed to various fairs, festivals and functions including healthcare check-ups.
SMILE members are actively conducting community visits to bring in more and more students to avail the education facility and engage the families of these kids in this initiative.
This project commenced from July 2015, and thenceforth, it is functional and engaged in teaching, mentoring and developing underprivileged students for their overall development. Formally, this project was inaugurated on October 27, 2016.
About 290 students have been enrolled and benefited in three academic years (2015-16; 2016-17 & 2017-18) at SMILE School.