Who Would Give Wings to her Dream?
Sebati enjoyed going to school. A top performer in her class, she was favoured by her teachers. Alas, her thirst for knowledge was abruptly squashed, as Sebati had to discontinue schooling after Class 4. Household work and the care of her grandfather had taken its toll, leaving the girl with little time to study. Now, that she was much older, her brother and his wife left Sebati in charge of the household tasks, while they worked as labourers at a nearby warehouse construction facility. Yet, all Sebati wanted to do was to go back to school.
How Technology made a Scholarship Scheme a Reality?
To reduce school dropout rates among tribal girls like Sebati, the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment, Government of Odisha launched a pre-matric scholarship scheme for scheduled castes and scheduled tribe (SC & ST) students. The scheme provided a cash incentive of INR 2000 every month to eligible students, on the condition that they achieve a 75% attendance. To deliver this scheme, the government partnered with the DFID (Department for International Development) UK, for technical and financial assistance. They rolled out a pilot project in Rayagada district, in September 2012.
“We knew early on that the scholarship scheme project would be challenging, given the state of infrastructure in India’s villages,” says the IT specialist at DFID. We realised that the success of the program would largely depend on operational excellence, supported by a robust information technology platform. We were aware of Mastek’s success in building large, complex, citizen-facing government projects and chose to partner them.” He added.