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Education and Opportunity at the Grass Roots

Friends of India’s mission is to “fight poverty and create opportunities for children and women in Tamil Nadu, India, by supporting basic education for underserved children and investing in vocational training, life-skills development and income generating activities for women.” A non-profit, charitable organization, Friends of India was founded in 2001 by its current President, Pamela Walsh.

Friends of India supports skills training for impoverished people who need to take on menial labour to supplement their family’s income. One young woman, for example, learned computer skills and typing, and now works at a local software company. Another learned to make detergents and cleaning products for sale, generating a regular income. The organization has also made the women of Sembakkam aware of their rights and helped them form a self-help group that empowered them to petition local authorities to pipe water to their village rather than spending hours each day walking long distances to collect and carry water home. In 2009 the Richard Walsh Music Project was established to teach music and the performing arts to disadvantaged children in southern India. In addition, the organization has provided financial and advisory assistance and helped fund Anbumalar School for handicapped children.

If interested in these or other Friends of India programs, contact: info@friends-of-india.org

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