Skip to main content

Asha Back to School Programme

The Background

A study released by the Government of the Indian state of Telangana in 2016 revealed that close to 38% of school children drop out before completing their high school education. This number went as high as 50% in certain districts. A parallel study to investigate the root cause behind this identified that the death/illness of a parent was one of the primary contributing factors. To cater to this need the Asha Back to School Program was started in the year 2008.

The Idea

Asha Back to School program identifies children of single mothers who may have had to be pulled out of school after the death/permanent illness of a father. After the death of their husbands, single mothers often find it difficult to meet household expenses such as food, rent and medical bills while also paying for their kid’s school fees. Due to their inability to pay the fee, the children are eventually pulled out of schools and stay at home. The Asha Back to School Program identifies such children and gets them back to school by helping them with their fees.

Over the last nine years, this program has helped over 495 kids get back to school and complete the education they deserve. In the most recent 10th grade Board exams, 24 students from this program wrote their final year high school exam and all of them graduated with an average of 78% marks and one of them scoring 100%.

The good English medium education that these kids complete sets them up for success and opens up for them an infinite set of opportunities to eventually help lift their families out of poverty.

Our contribution and relationship

The Asha Back to School Program is implemented by the volunteer based non-profit organization Asha Jyothi.  Started in June 2007 by taking two girls who were being left on the streets of Hyderabad, the work has grown today to 15 children homes with 172 children, 495 children of single moms in Asha Back to school program and 17 tuition centers.  Asha Jyothi also provides employable skills to around 850+ school dropout girls and single moms every year. The employment rate for these girls have been 89%. McKinsey-for-Children is supporting two projects of Asha Jyothi, Asha Back to School and Asha Tuition Centers, by covering the children’s tuition fees and providing financial support for the operations of the tuition centers. Since the beginning of the collaboration, Asha Jyothi was able to take in 250 additional students into the Back to School program & 200 kids in tuition centers based on McKinsey-for-Children’s support.