By the time they even set foot in school, underprivileged children have dramatically lower cognitive and non-cognitive abilities than those of children from richer families. This has strong and enduring consequences for their health, education and well-being.
India is estimated to have 440 million children. 42% of them lie below the international poverty line. This means that more than 42% of India’s children are predetermined to have a poorer quality of life, before they even enter school.
In a day, a child spends significantly more time
with his/her family and broader community than in school.
A child’s parents are and always will be his/her
companions in learning.
13% of waking hours a day spent in school.
87% of waking hours a day spent at home. For children to attain their utmost potential, they need a healthy, supportive and stimulating environment in school and at home.
The evidence is consistent, positive, and convincing: families have a major influence on their children’s achievement in school and through life. But programs that work to increase children’s achievement often neglect this indispensable stakeholder: parents.
Parents in low-income communities, many themselves uneducated, understand firsthand the value of an excellent education. They make sacrifices and overcome countless obstacles in order to assure a better life for their children than the one they have. They possess the necessary determination, but lack the awareness, capacity and capability to engage effectively with their child’s development.
We, at Saarthi, strongly believe that improving the quantity and quality of parents’ involvement with their child can positively impact child’s achievement, including learning outcomes.
With the aim of bringing about sustained, positive behaviour change in parents, our program
and delivery is grounded in key principles of behavioural science.
We equip parents with core parenting knowledge, attitudes and practices so they are empowered to effectively engage with their children at home.
through developmentally-appropriate, easy-to-understand and easy-to-do activities, delivered to their home through kits and IVR calls.
through live calls and one-on-one
sessions by a trusted mother from their community.
Both Monika Didi and her husband are orphans, so it is very important to them that they provide their daughter with with the parental care, encouragement and guidance that they did not receive as children. Monika Didi joined Saarthi's program so she could provide her daughter with stimulating material after school, but was apprehensive as she herself does not how to read or write in Hindi or English.
This is the first time someone has come to my house and showed me how I can help my child even if I don’t know how to read or write. Wish this would have happened earlier. I now know how I can contribute to my daughter’s academic growth everydayMonika Didi, Karma’s Mother
With her son preoccupied between school, tuition and playing with his neighbours, Yashodha Didi felt like she hardly got time to spend with him. Having grown up in a village herself, she was worried that the busy city life would create a distance between her and her son.
Through Saarthi, I have learnt that there are so many ways I can support my son’s upbringing - just by doing simple things like talking to him about his feelings and playing together. The activities give me a chance to spend time with my son.Yashodha Didi, Santosh’s Mother
Payal Didi typically spends her day taking care of household duties along with her sister-in-laws, and does not have much interaction outside the house. She was unsure of what her son was learning in school and in tuition, and felt that she would not have much to contribute in those areas of her son’s life.
I want my son to be well-educated and build a better life for himself and his family. That’s why school is important. But Saarthi has taught me that there are some things which school and tuition cannot teach my child - things only I can teach my child.Payal Didi, Yashiv’s Mother
Akanksha leads program monitoring & evaluation as well as manages strategic partnerships at Saarthi. Before joining Saarthi, she worked with PwC on social sector consulting projects across public health, water & sanitation and nutrition. She holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Rural Management from IRMA.
Ankit leads programme design and implementation at Saarthi. He is a Teach For India alum and worked as an EdTech Programme Manager with Central Square Foundation, before starting Saarthi. He graduated from Apeejay College of Engineering with a Degree in Electronics and Communications Engineering.
Smruti leads product design at Saarthi, developing online and offline content for parents. Before joining Saarthi, she worked as a Program Manager at a Chennai-based life skills organisation, Schools of Equality, and as a Fellow at Teach for India. She has a MA (Hons) in International Relations and Modern History from the University of St Andrews, UK.
Transforming Parents Involvement in their Child's Development.