The Ashraya Initiative for Children is dedicated to improving the lives and shaping the futures of vulnerable children in Pune, India by advancing educational opportunities, nurturing holistic development and building healthy, empowered communities.
RESIDENTIAL PROGRAM (since 2005)
For a small group of orphaned and abandoned children, AIC’s Residential Program arranges for boarding school education at nearby residential schools. Although their day-to-day needs are met by the school, our Residential Program staff provide additional care (counseling, medical care, clothing and personal items, weekend visits, etc) and a social support system to allow each child to grow, develop, and to be loved and cared for. AIC’s Residential Program also celebrates birthdays, holidays and other special occasions as a family. During school vacations, the Residential Program children participate in enrichment activities, attend trips and holiday camps, and receive additional tutoring in a structured learning environment. (Read the latest updates from the Residential Program on our blog.)
Our outreach programs have grown directly out of our work with street children living and working in our neighborhood of Yerwada. Many of the children on the streets of Pune return each night to their families, only to leave early the next morning to eke out a meager income begging at busy intersections. Because their income or labor in the home is many times necessary for the survival of their families, they are completely unable to attend school, thus perpetuating a cycle of poverty.
Education outreach program (since 2006)
Our Education Outreach Program directly supports over 200 children through their primary and secondary education. We enroll the children in school, provide all the necessary fees and supplies, and tutor them for a minimum of two hours each school day to supplement their academic instruction. We also work with their families to ensure proper emotional and social support, and to address any further barriers to our students reaching their full potential. (Read the latest updates from the Education Outreach Program on our blog.)
Health outreach program (since 2007)
Our Health Outreach Program works more broadly at the familial and community level and addresses the issues that force children onto the streets in the first place. We provide all necessary medical care, including routine health check-ups, immunizations, emergency medical care, hospitalizations, surgeries, nutritional supplementation, and antenatal monitoring. Additionally, we teach health education and adult literacy courses to improve health awareness and empower adults in the community to become forces of positive change, and we work closely with governmental and non-governmental healthcare programs and providers to improve access to healthcare and health information. (Read the latest updates from the Health Outreach Program on our blog.)
Community Outreach Program (since 2008)
Our Community Outreach Program supports ongoing intervention efforts to resolve core problems associated with poverty in our community. We help women build additional earning capacity for their families (for example, through microfinance groups and vocational training), provide social work services to help identify solutions and provide counseling for families in crisis, and arrange emergency financial and material assistance to families we serve. (Read the latest updates from the Community Outreach Program on our blog.)