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29 December 2018

Kishori Vikas: Changing Lives,


One Girl at a Time
Written by: Aditya Khera & Harshini Gadapa

Aditya, Simran, and Harshini with some girls attending the after-school tuition program at GPS Shaikpet.

Kishori Vikas, an 800 strong after-school program dedicated to the empowerment of women
throughout the state of Telangana, has had a profound impact on the education and personal
development of its students. The program incorporates three areas: education, arts, and defense. The
after-school program provides girls with the opportunity to learn from educators to better
understand the concepts in the classroom, allowing them to excel in their studies. The arts
component stresses a focus on tradition and culture, inspiring both patriotism and creativity in the
young girls’ minds. Through their teaching of dancing and singing, the girls find a way to express
themselves in a nurturing environment. Self-defense is the another aspect of Kishori Vikas, which
focuses on helping girls defend themselves from a variety of threats. In a country where women's
safety is a major issue, Kishori Vikas attempts to remedy it through training and careful instruction
of women. As an extremely well-rounded program, Kishori Vikas has made a positive mark on the
lives of countless women and inspired them to dream for more, giving them the tools to reach those
dreams. My name is Aditya Khera, and I’m an 11th grader currently studying in Langley High
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School in Virginia. Simran and Harshini, both 11th graders from Oakridge International School and
Indus International School, respectively, have joined me in visiting the tuition centres organized by
Kishori Vikas. We have put together a few profiles of students that are a part of the after-school
program to better understand the impact that the program has had on individual girls. Through our
interviews, it was clear that this program is extremely important and we hope the passion that these
girls have for the program is conveyed effectively to you.

Name: Jayashri
School Name: GPS Shaikpet
Standard: 7
How long they have attended the school: 1 Year
Age: 12
Favorite subject: English
Why they like the subject: She finds writing and speaking English easy. Jayashri also feels as if
learning how to fluently speak English is important because it’s the most widely spoken language in
the world and can, therefore, help her in many given situations.
Career goals: Doctor
Why they want to do it: She wants to help people in need to the best of her ability, knowing that
people value health above everything else. Restoring people's health, and even saving them from
death in some cases, is very rewarding.
How Kishori Vikas helped them: Kishori Vikas helped Jayashri realize the importance and value
of education. Initially, she didn’t like to attend school, but now enjoys learning through the various
teaching methods of the teachers at Kishori Vikas.

Name: Jyothi
School Name: GPS Shaikpet
Standard: 6
How long they have attended the school: 1 year
Age: 12
Favorite subject: English
Why they like the subject: She loves to read poetry and literature from famous writers. Her teacher
is very helpful and teaches through literature and great works.
Career goals: Teacher
Why they want to do it: She wants to become a teacher so that she can inspire young minds and
help shape the nation’s future. Teaching is a great way to change lives and education is vital for a
person in this country. She wants to teach so that others can live a good life.
How Kishori Vikas helped them: Kishori Vikas is a great way for me to interact with new people.
She has been at this school for one year, and this program has helped her make friends and study at
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the same time. She thinks this program will help her in becoming a teacher because it helps
reinforce the value of a good education in her and her new friends.

Name: Shravani
School Name: GPS Shaikpet
Standard: 6
How long they have attended the school: Joined
this year
Age: 12
Favorite subject: Science
Why they like the subject: She loves science,
specifically biology and human anatomy. She finds
it very interesting to study about what makes up us,
and the way our bodies function. Anatomy is such
an important component of who we are and it is
inspirational to study it.
Career goals: Doctor
Why they want to do it: She wants to be a doctor
so she can help her community and help the less
fortunate peoples in the surrounding areas. In
SImran, Aditya, and Harshini speaking to a few girls who attend GPS Shaikpet.
Hyderabad, there is a lot of inequality. She wants to
be a doctor so she can provide access to medicine to
those in the slums of her city.
How Kishori Vikas helped them: Kishori Vikas has helped her become more compassionate and
caring for others. She has made new friends while studying here, who have helped her understand
others. Becoming a doctor is about helping and understanding people and Kishori Vikas has helped
her learn to do that.

Name: Mahalakshmi
School Name: GPS Shaikpet
Standard: 7
How long they have attended the school: 4 years
Age: 11
Favorite subject: Telugu
Why they like the subject: It is the language of her ancestors. Our culture is based on this language
and it is very important for her to stay connected to it. Additionally, the class itself is very
interesting. They are given the opportunity to read great works by Telugu writers who helped make
the language the beauty it is today.
Career goals: Doctor
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Why they want to do it: I wish to be a doctor so


that I improve the lives of as many people as
possible.
How Kishori Vikas helped them: To become a
doctor, she will have to work extremely hard and
devote a lot of energy to studying. Kishori Vikas
has helped her by building her hardworking
personality. It has shown her that she is capable
of anything if she works hard and sets her mind
to it.

Name: Harshita
School Name: GPS Shaikpet
Standard: 7th
How long they have attended the school: 1
Year
Age: 13
Jayashri, Jyothi, and Shravani of GPS Shaikpet. Favorite subject: Maths
Why they like the subject: She loves maths. It
is something she likes to do for fun and during the after school tuition center. Maths allows her to
solve things in different ways and she can do problems well since she is able to visualize the
numbers through word problems.
Career goals: Dancer
Why they want to do it: Dancing is one of her biggest passions and is a beautiful art form that
helps her express who she is. She wants to be a dancer so her whole life can be filled with art and
creativity.
How Kishori Vikas helped them: Dancing is a positive way of showing the world our culture and
our greatness. Kishori Vikas helps her accomplish her goals in life because of its stress on staying
patriotic and in touch with our culture. The cultural teachings include dancing, and are very
important to her because they have helped her improve as a dancer and as a person.

Name: Mamatha
School Name: GPS Shaikpet
Standard: 8th
How long they have attended the school: Since 1st grade
Age: 13
Favorite subject: Physics
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Why they like the subject: She enjoys learning how the world around her works and appreciates
the more challenging aspects of the subject. Her main reason for liking physics is the fact that she
has a lot of confidence in her general understanding of it.
Career goals: ENT Doctor
Why they want to do it: She has seen a lot of people who don’t properly take care of themselves,
so she wants to promote and encourage the prioritization of health.
How Kishori Vikas helped them: Kishori Vikas helped her become more culturally aware of her
surroundings and develop a passion for not only learning the material given at school, but also
learning various skills through
Maheshwari and Nikita of Round Table Government School. multiple hands-on experiences.

Name: Maheshwari
School Name: Round Table
Government School
Standard: 9th
How long they have attended
the school: 3 years
Age: 14
Favorite subject: Telugu
Why they like the subject:
Telugu is her favorite class
because they read many poems,
which allows her to see different things in various perspectives, depending upon the poet. She is
able to see things differently due to poetry.
Career goals: Dancer
Why they want to do it: Maheshwari enjoys dancing, due to the fact that it’s a form of expression.
She takes a strong liking to music and believes that you can express any emotion or situation
through dance, which is almost a universal language for her. She appreciates the fact that anything
conveyed through dance can be understood by anyone.
How Kishori Vikas helped them: Kishori Vikas promotes learning through different methods, such
as dance and song.

Name: Nikita
School Name: Round Table Government School
Standard: 9th
How long they have attended the school: 4 years
Age: 14
Favorite subject: Maths
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Why they like the subject: The main reason why she likes math is because she tends to understand
it easier compared to her other subjects and also because it’s commonly used in a variety of fields.
Career goals: Dancer
Why they want to do it: Nikita wants to become a dancer because she has a passion to it, which
Kishori Vikas helped her discover. She likes to stay fit while being able to express a variety of
emotions and themes through dance.
How Kishori Vikas helped them: Kishori Vikas helps the students maintain a balance between
work and fun, while making sure that they learn something out of it. For Nikita, Kishori Vikas has
helped her discover a new means of expressing herself, as well as her creativity.

Name: Rajeshwari
Aditya and Harshini speaking to two girls from Round Table Government School.

School Name: Round Table Government


School
Standard: 9th
How long they have attended the school: 3
years
Age: 14
Favorite subject: English
Why they like the subject: She reads many
stories in class with her teachers and
understands the subject really well.
Career goals: Teacher
Why they want to do it: She wants to help children like her who do not attend a “high-end” school
and provide quality education to strengthen and make sure our future generations are well-educated
and aware of real-life problems.
How Kishori Vikas helped them: Kishori Vikas not only teaches them what is prescribed in their
syllabus, but also the leadership skills required in their day-to-day life through methods that are
enjoyable for their students. She and her classmates learn about teamwork through communication
and actively working with one another.

Name: Akhila
School Name: Round Table Government School
Standard: 9th
How long they have attended the school: 3 years
Age: 14
Favorite subject: English
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Akhila and Anusha of Round Table Government School.

Why they like the subject: She’s fond


of the fact that her English class is very
versatile, making each class engaging
for herself and her peers. They also
learn a variety of skills, ranging from
proper use of grammar to improving
vocabulary.
Career goals: Bank manager
Why they want to do it: One of her
family members is a bank manager.
She also believes that bank managers
have quite a few benefits financially
and wants to aid her family when they are in need of her help.
How Kishori Vikas helped them: Kishori Vikas helped her realize the importance of education,
which she wouldn’t have seen if she continued to study in her previous school. The teachers are
really helpful and patient with their students, encouraging a positive and comfortable learning
environment.

Name: Anusha
School Name: Round Table Government School
Standard: 9th
How long they have attended the school: 4 years
Age: 14
Favorite subject: Maths
Why they like the subject: Math is applicable in many fields and can also be used in our day-to-
day life. It also tests and improves problem solving skills.
Career goals: Maths teacher
Why they want to do it: A lot of her peers struggle with math and dislike the subject, so she wants
to help others understand it better and learn to love the subject. She believes that everyone should
have a basic understanding of math to be able to use them in our everyday lives.
How Kishori Vikas helped them: Kishori Vikas helps young girls like Anusha and her classmates
in getting a proper education, and having the credibility to dream big and achieve future goals.
Through Kishori Vikas, the students learn how to work together as a team and to also be self-
sustaining. A lot of the girls have matured in terms of mindset and grit by proving their strength and
perseverance of character.

Name: Srinidhi
School Name: Round Table Government School
Standard: 9
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How long they have attended the school: 1 year


Age: 14
Favorite subject: Maths
Why they like the subject: It’s easy to understand and is applicable to many fields. She can use her
knowledge in maths to understand the world in new ways.
Career goals: Police officer
Why they want to do it: She wants to be a police officer so she can help out her community. She
loves her city and wants to be able to give back to it in a positive manner. She also wishes to
become an officer so she can deal with the crime and social problems Hyderabad faces.
How Kishori Vikas helped them: Kishori Vikas has helped her plan for the future and accomplish
her goals by allowing her to develop as a person. The program and the friends she has met have
helped her gain courage, which is something very important for being a police officer. She has
grown as a girl in this program and matured together, mentally, with her friends.

Name: Pooja
School Name: Round Table Government School
Standard: 9
How long they have attended the school: 4 years
Age: 14
Favorite subject: Maths
Why they like the subject: Maths challenges her to find creative ways to solve problems.
Everything she knows in math can be applied to different problems and work to help me find a new
and interesting way to look at things.
Career goals: Fashion Designer
Why they want to do it: I love fashion and love how it is an artistic way of presenting myself.
Fashion and art are very important to me and help me express who I am, I want to be a fashion
designer so that I can help out other girls to express themselves.
How Kishori Vikas helped them: Kishori Vikas has helped her in both school and with her own
career goals. She wants to design clothing, and Kishori Vikas has helped her meet new people and
understand who they are. It has helped her make friends and maintain high academic standing.

Overall, we had a great time conversing with the students of the two government schools
and not only learned from them, but also from each other. Together, we admired the young girls and
their passion to take the opportunities within their reach and use them to their advantage. Their
kind, helping, courageous nature has inspired us to work more towards the benefit of those who are
not gifted with as many opportunities that we may have. It was an amazing experience that both of
us benefited from greatly and will never forget. We hope to do more work, such as this, in the
future. We would like to thank Seva Bharathi for gifting us this wonderful experience through this
29 December 2018

Aditya and Harshini with the girls of Round Table Government School. internship and look forward to
being able to continue our work
with the organization.