Educating the poor is more than just a numbers game, says Shukla Bose. She tells the story of her groundbreaking Parikrma Humanity Foundation, which brings hope to India’s slums by looking past the daunting statistics and focusing on treating each child as an individual.
Shukla Bose is the founder and head of the Parikrma Humanity Foundation, a nonprofit that runs four extraordinary schools for poor children.
The word “Parikrma” implies a full revolution, a complete path around — and Shukla Bose’s Parikrma Humanity Foundation offers literally that to kids in poor urban areas around Bangalore. Parikrma’s four Schools of Hope teach the full, standard Indian curriculum to children who might not otherwise see the inside of a classroom, with impressive results. Equally important, the schools build an “end-to-end” environment that supports learning — offering lunch every day, health-care and family support. Beyond these schools, Parikrma has inaugurated several afterschool programs and has plans for setting up a central teacher-training hub.
Bose left behind a corporate career in 1992 to found Parikrma with a small group of friends. The nonprofit holds itself to formal business goals and strict accountability, and has developed some clever fundraising and marketing campaigns. As Bose puts it, the goal of Parikrma is to help build a better India by tapping its greatest strength: the vitality and potential of its people.
“Education of children is at the core of our aim to transform poor communities into self-sustaining, contributing communities. ”