HEMLATA’s vision is to build an empowered workforce of female leaders, thus shaping the future for young women to lead lives of dignity and purpose. Human Dignity should not be based on hierarchy, wealth, religion, race or place of birth.
When resources are limited, it becomes even more important to understand why providing “Quality Education” for girls matters. When we speak about girls’ education in India, we must approach this with the dignity and an understanding of how a focussed approach can change lives for the better.
HEMLATA is committed to creating sustainable impact by identifying and providing talented girls, from India’s lowest socio-economic strata, with H100 Impact Scholarships to quality tertiary college education in India. In doing so we are creating an environment for our H100 Scholars to step out of their cycle of inter-generational poverty and support the next generation towards quality education. By means of the holistic HEMLATA 100 Impact Scholarship, we empower our H100 Scholars with quality tertiary education, supported by a Mentor living outside of India and Life-Skills training. Inter-disciplinary learning and internships, round off the scholarship.
Years of hierarchal tradition in India, combined with Patriarchal laws and traditions, have been responsible for passing on the advantage to the male child, over the female, resulting in an imbalance in the opportunities available to girls.
Evidence tells us that the returns from investing in girls are so high that no nation can afford not to educate their girls. Yet, we still see girls left out and sidelined especially when in comes to secondary education and higher education.
When girls are educated, we truly see the investment with the highest return in the world leading to better outcomes in not only the traditional economic areas of growth and incomes but also as mentioned, (by BAIN & CO) “in its positive impact in areas like reducing rates of infant mortality, maternal mortality, child marriage, and the incidence of HIV/AIDS and malaria, along with its positive impact on agricultural productivity, resilience to natural disasters, and women’s empowerment”READ MORE
Problem We Are Trying to Solve
Problem: In India, years of hierarchal and patriarchal traditions have been responsible for passing on the advantage to the male child, over the female, resulting in an imbalance in the opportunities available to girls.
Solution: Provide focussed and qualitative intervention to girls from India's lowest socio-economic strata as soon as she has completed school via the H100 IMPACT Initiatve.
We believe this is the best time for intervention, because even if a girl were to finish school, but did not have the support or funds to receive higher education, she can be pulled back into working for the family or would be forced into marriage. Plus, completion of a school degree is not sufficient to be awarded a good salaried paying job.
However, with our intervention, the girl or H100 Scholar, receives the opportunity to go to the best accredited colleges in India, funds that support not just her tuition but boarding, 3 meals a day and a stipend to cover her basic needs. Thus she is able to concentrate on her education, earn a relative income, that can contribute to her family and to society.
“What we are learning around the world is that if women are healthy and educated, their families will flourish. If women are free from violence, their families will flourish. If women have a chance to work and earn as full and equal partners in society, their families will flourish.” Hillary Rodham Clinton, Fourth World Conference on Women, Beijing, 1995
How We Are Going To Do It
The HEMLATA 100 IMPACT Initiative is a hybrid mix of philanthropy + investment to bring about real and sustainable impact.
The H100 Impact recipient receives a collateral free and interest free scholarship towards her full education, academic books, and a laptop at an accredited college in India. Additional requisites such as lodging, meals and transport are added based on need. A monthly fixed stipend is provided as Pocket money to cover sanitary napkins and personal expenses. Every H100 Scholar is supported by an individual Mentor, along with life skills coaching, skill-based interdisciplinary learning, and internships.
Mentorship and Life-Skills: To support our Scholars in college and to ensure results the program is supported by an individual Mentor for each girl, across the 3 years of her college. The H100 program also supports the scholars with Life-skills based on the WHO standards, designed by a professional coach. All too often, we have seen that due to patriarchy and its might, women are usually portrayed in a passive and discriminatory manner. With a dearth of mentors, and an education system that places little focus on the soft skills, participation in leadership and life-skills become critical for success at work.
Once our H100 Graduate Scholar earns a taxable income, she initiates a monthly contribution to HEMLATA’s Horizon Fund, amounting to a minimum of one-third of her total Scholarship investment, towards the education of future H100 Scholars. In this manner, 3 H100 Graduate Scholars, collectively have the privilege, to sponsor a new fresh applicant to study at college.
In shaping «HER» future, the H100 Impact Initiative is not only developing an educated workforce that is changing the narrative on gender inequality, adding to diversity and inclusion, but is also empowering girls to act as change-makers by supporting other girls in their communities.
“We want education by which character is formed, strength of mind is increased, the intellect is expanded, and by which one can stand on one’s own feet” - Swami Vivekananda If we can imbibe this faith in our girls, inspire and motivate them, support them with Mentors and Buddies, and provide them with an opportunity at work, our girls will grow into empowered young women, able to take on any challenge that life may throw at them.
Lives touched: The H100 Impact Initiative currently has 18 scholars enrolled across various stages, directly impacting almost 100+ individuals (including scholars and their immediate family members).
Academic and co-curricular outcomes: H100 Impact scholars are enrolled in B.A, B.Com, BBA, B.Tech and B.Sc courses across India’s top universities in the respective fields, such as Mount Carmel, Christ University and Indraprastha University. On average, the scholars have achieved scores of around 75-80% in their courses, as of Academy Year 2020-21. They are also actively involved in several sports such as volleyball, basketball, football etc., cultural activities such as dance and music, and actively took up leadership positions and participated in inter-school activities.
Life skills developed: Under the H100 Impact Initiative, each scholar receives mentorship under a unique international mentor, aimed specifically at bringing in diversity of thought and difference in perspectives to the conversation. The mentor commits to mentoring her H100 Scholar throughout her college journey, during which the mentor works with their individual scholar on the 12 life skills of WHO, guided by a professional coach.
Employment outcomes: The first four scholars of the H100 Impact Initiative, who have completed their university degree program, have received employment offers from reputed firms such as Anheuser-Busch (AB InBev), Fidelity Information Services and Zest Money for roles such as Software Development Engineer, Analyst, Associate Tech Representative etc. The average annual salary (pre-tax) for these scholars is approximately INR 550k. Social outcomes: H100 scholars have reported several improved social outcomes such as increased confidence, higher aspirations and higher self-esteem. They have learnt the importance of mental health and self-care and have become more sensitive and compassionate towards societal issues and challenges.
Long Term Impact
Impact on H100 Scholars: Without the provision of higher education scholarships, H100 impact scholars, who belong to lowest socio-economic stratas of the society, would have been forced to either discontinue their education or seek an education debt. Thus, the first direct benefit to the scholar is the interest savings on the higher education loan. Secondly, in order to enhance their employability, H100 scholars are also supported by individual mentors and buddies, who impart necessary life skills training as well as career guidance, free of cost. Thus, scholars become a part of the empowered tax-paying workforce of the country, seeking higher salaries than what they would have without a graduation degree. According to several studies, access to higher education also causes an improvement in the quality of their life as it leads to increased awareness about their rights and resources, reduced loneliness, anxiety and depression, and increased social status, to name a few benefits.
Impact on their families: The benefits of the scholar’s education and financial independence also extend to their families as they contribute towards household expenses resulting in reduction of household debt resulting in interest savings. Additionally, corporate employee benefits such as family insurance, medical coverage for parents etc. lead to additional savings.
Impact on their communities: In addition to serving as an inspiration for all girls and their families in the community, the H100 scholars contribute directly towards society through 30 hours of compulsory community service during each year of university. Once employed, the scholars will also pay back at least one-third of the total scholarship investments, over the course of 4-6 years, towards the education of the future H100 Scholars.
The H100 Impact Initiative directly upholds SDG #4: Quality Education and SDG #5: Gender Equality, indirectly contributing to SDG#1, SDG#3, SDG#8, and SDG#10.
What We Need To Do
Why should one support the HEMLATA 100 IMPACT initiative?
Our primary goal is to offer our girls tertiary quality education to enable them, the first in their families, to break the cycle of inter-generational poverty and to ensure that they live a life of self-worth and dignity. Years of tradition and culture, in India, have always placed the female at the lowest end of the family spectrum.
Our end goal, with the H100 Impact initiative is to build an empowered work force that can act change-makers and advocates for education, with dignity and purpose.
As Brookings Institution writes: “Many poor parents who choose not to send their girls to school simply do not believe that education can provide an alternative economic path for their daughters. Thus, a greater focus on connecting secondary education to jobs not only provides the existing supply of educated girls with economic opportunities but will inevitably create a positive cycle of demand for more and better education for girls.”
To support our Scholars in college and to ensure results the program is supported by an individual Mentor for each girl, across the 3 years of her college.
The H100 program also supports the scholars with Life-skills based on the WHO standards, designed by a professional coach. Because we believe education along with implementation of life-skills can help to broaden minds and create diversity in thought and perspective.
All too often, we have seen that due to patriarchy and its might, women are usually portrayed in a passive and discriminatory manner. With a dearth of mentors, and an education system that places little focus on the soft skills, participation in leadership and life-skills become critical for success at work.
Education is empowering, but it will be more so if we start focusing on teaching empowerment and leadership skills to girls.
Timeframe: As of June 2021, 18 Scholars are enrolled in the H100 program.
Goal: Our aim is to grow by 20 Scholars every year, to reach 100 Scholars by 2025.