#MeetTheEntrepreneur

बिहार के सबसे पिछड़े जिलों की सूची में शुमार है जमुई और मुंगेर। नक्सलियों से सबसे ज्यादा प्रभावित इन जिलों मे शिक्षा का अलख जगा रहा है आईसक्षम। जी ये कोई सरकार की योजना नहीं है। ये तीन युवाओं का जुनून है। जो देश के प्रीमियर यूनिवर्सिटी से अपनी पढ़ाई पूरी कर गांव की दिशा और ग्रामीणों की दशा सुधारने में जुटा है।

दरअसल यूपी के आदित्य बिहार के रवि और श्रवण पीएमआरडीएफफेलोशिप के तहत यहां अपना फेलोशिप पूरा करने आए थे। साढ़े तीन वर्ष इन गांवों की गलियों में गुजारने के बाद इन्हें यह अहसास हुआ कि अगर इन गांवों की तस्वीर बदलनी हैं तो ये साढ़े तीन वर्ष काफी नहीं है। अपनी इसी मकसद कोपूरा करने के लिए इन तीनों नौजवानों ने आईसक्षम नाम की एनजीओ बनाया और जुट गए अपने मिशन को पूरा करने में

कुशलऔरआत्मनिर्भरबनानाहैलक्ष्य

संस्था के आदित्य बताते हैं कि वे ऐसे समाज का निर्माण करना चाहते हैं जहां वंचित तबके के लोग भी अच्छे पढ़ेलिखे, कुशल और आत्मनिर्भर हों। वे अपनी समस्याओं के समाधान के लिए किसी पर निर्भर नहीं रहें। वे इसका खुद समाधान कर सकें। इनके साथ जुड़ने वालों में ज्यादातर लड़कियां और दिव्यांग बच्चे हैं। अभी तक ये लगभग 750 बच्चों को प्रशिक्षित कर चुके हैं।

दोप्रकारकादेतेहैंप्रशिक्षण

आईसक्षम दो तरह की प्रशिक्षण कार्यक्रम चलाता है। पहला तीन महीने का एनएसडीएस से प्रमाणित तीन महीने का सर्टिफिकेट कोर्स है। जबकि दूसरा आईआईएम, बंगलुरु के मेंटरशिप में दो वर्षों का आईसक्षम फेलोशिप प्रोग्राम है। इसमें चुनिंदा युवाओं को ही जगह मिल पाती है। फिलहाल इस फेलोशिप के तहत पचास फेलो चुने गए हैं जो सरकारी स्कूलों और सामुदायिक अध्ययन केंद्र में बच्चों को पढ़ा रहे हैं।

दिखनेलगाहैअसर

आईसक्षम का असर अब गांवों में दिखने भी लगा है। दो वर्ष पहले जिस कस्तूरबा विद्यालय के मात्र तीस फीसदी बच्चे ही वर्णमाला और तेइस फीसदी बच्चे ही कहानी को पढ़ने में सक्षम थे आईसक्षम फेलो के प्रयास के बाद अब इक्यावन प्रतिशत बच्चे कहानी पढ़ने लगे हैं।

सक्षमनेइनकेसपनोंकोकियासाकार

मुंगेर के सराधी गांव की तान्या शिक्षक बनना चाहती हैं। दो वर्ष पहले तक उन्हें बस यह एक ख्वाब लगता था। आईसक्षम ने इनके इस ख्वाब को हकिकत में बदल दिया। इसके बदौलत तान्या केवल अपनी पढ़ाई पूरी कर रहीहै बल्कि सरकारी स्कूलों में फेलो के तौर पर बच्चों को पढ़ा भी रही है।

पैरों से दिव्यांग राजाराम जमुई के सरारी गांव के हैं। पिछले कुछ वर्षों से वह बच्चों को पढ़ाने का काम करते हैं। वह बताते हैं कि दो वर्ष पहले वह मात्र 10 बच्चों को पढ़ाते हैं लेकिन अब उनके पास पढ़ने वाले बच्चों की संख्या 40 के पार है। इसका श्रेय वह आईसक्षम की ओर से मिले तकनीकी प्रशिक्षण को देते हैं।


2025तक50लाखबच्चोंकोसाक्षरबनानेकालक्ष्य

अपने मिशन के बारे में पूछने पर आदित्य बताते हैं कि वह 2025 तक 50 लाख बच्चों को साक्षर बनाना चाहते हैं। साक्षरता से उनका तात्पर्य गुणवत्तापूर्ण प्राथमिक शिक्षा से है। साथ ही वे 50 हजार युवाओं को सामुदायिक शिक्षक के रूप में कुशल बनाना और पांच लाख युवाओं को विभिन्न व्यावसायिक क्षेत्रों के कौशल में कुशल बनाने की कोशिश में जुटे हैं।

टॉप50इनोवेटिवआइडियामेंशामिल

आईसक्षम को भारत सरकार की संस्थाओं द्वारा देश के पांच बेहतरीन स्कील इनोवेशन इनिसिएटिव के तहत चुना गया था। और डिजिटल इंडिया चुनौति के लिए देश के टॉप 50 नए इनोवेटिव आइडिया में स्थान मिला। पिछले साल आई सक्षमजनहित जागरण के कार्यक्रम के विजेता रहा था। जनहित जागरण की तरफ से इसको इन्क्यूबेशन सपोर्ट भी मिल रहा है।

I-Saksham Education and Learning Foundation

i-Saksham.org

What is iSaksham?

iSaksham is an effort to contribute towards bridging this gap. iSaksham is working in remote and conflict-ridden areas of the country (Bihar as of now), where local youths are selected and trained in use of digital technology, text books, pedagogy and other relevant tools and techniques to deliver quality education, using low-cost android tablets. These trained youths, significant of whom are girls, in turn run tuition centers where they teach community children at a nominal fee, under the mentoring of iSaksham team, thus providing them with in-village earning opportunity.

This video link gives a glimpse of the work we do.

What is the current scale of iSaksham and future plans?

 As of today we are working with ~250 youth, 100 of whom have completed training and 150 are under training. In addition to this, 40+ tuition centers and 1,000+ students are being actively monitored.

iSaksham aspires to build community of 50,000 tutors, cover 5 Million children and provide avenues of skill development to 500,000 youth on various vocational trades by 2025 along with building a sustainable and an expandable model.

Founders’ Profile:

 

Aditya Tyagi (CFO)

Aditya has done his Masters in Computer Application from Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi. He has earlier served as Prime Minister Rural Development Fellow in Arunanchal Pradesh and Jamui and as Director i3consultancy. He started his career in Research Analytics team at McKinsey Knowledge Centre.

 

Ravi Dhanuka
(Director, Operations)
Ravi has done his Post Graduate Diploma in Rural Management from IRMA, Anand. He has earlier served as Prime Minister Rural Development Fellow in Munger, Bihar. He started his careeras Unit Head-BASIX in Amravati, Maharashtra.

 

Shravan Jha
(Chief Knowledge Officer)
Shravan has done his MBA (Agribusiness) from  Symbisois Institute of International Business, Pune. He is an Acumen fellow. He has earlier served as Prime Minister Rural Development Fellow in Jamui, Bihar. He started his career with SKS Microfinance, serving as Lead manager, Internal audit.

 

Evolution of the organization since its inception:

i-Saksham owes its roots to Prime Minister Rural Development Fellowship. It gave us three co-founders a platform to come together and experience the challenges in the education sector first hand and instilled in us the courage to pursue our intervention. As PMRDFs we started i-Saksham as a pilot in three residential schools in Jamui wherein we used Android tablets to engage students through apps and audio-video content.

We were lucky to get support from like minded people from the start, and the first of our supporter was Sameer Jain, an IIT alumnus, whose organization BodhGuru developed quality app-based content for the children. We wrote to him, and he willingly supported us free of cost. Through this period of learning and iteration with our service model, we decided to work with community youths who teach primary grade students, as we believed it has the potential to serve the dual purpose of providing education equity and an opportunity for an additional livelihood. We were selected by Skilling Committee set up under National Skill Development Agency, as one of the 5 most innovative project under skilling, and were supported by grant support from National Skill Development Corporation. This helped us to scale our operation to more than 30 villages in 2 districts of Jamui and Munger, reaching to 500 youths. More than 70% of these youths are girls.

i-Saksham Board:

1. Mr. Anup Mukerji (Independent Director) Shri Anup Mukerji has an extensive experience of over 37 years in Government Service both in Bihar and at the Centre. He retired as Chief Secretary, Government of Bihar (GoB) in 2011. He has rich experience in diverse fields including land administration, water resources, drinking water and rural sanitation, industry, education, information technology, public sector administration, senior personnel management, defence production and rural development.

2. Mr.Sandeep Uppal (Director) has over 12 years of experience in consulting, analytics and research primarily in the financial service and retail industry. He is a Chartered accountant and a business graduate with CISA and CIA certification.

3. Shweta Anand Arora (Director) started her career at The Boston Consulting Group as a Senior Associate, where she worked on strategy, cost optimisation, and post-merger integration and sourcing projects. She then switched sectors to pursue her passion to improve education in India. Shweta is a gold medallist in Psychology from Delhi University. She did her MBA from IIM-Ahmedabad and a Masters in Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

4. Mr.Soumen Biswas (Mentor) is an independent consultant and has huge experience of serving in development sector. He has earlier served as an ED of PRADAN.

5. Ranita Basu Ray (CEO) has over 7 years of experience in the field of consultancy and analytics. She has worked with leading retailers in Europe and Financial institutions in South East Asia. She received her Masters in Economics from Jawaharlal Nehru University and Bachelors in Science(Economics) from Presidency College, Calcutta.

Acclamations received

a.i-Saksham adjudged as one of the best 5 innovative proposals under ‘Skills Innovation Initiative’ by a committee constituting of Chairman, NSDA, NSDC; DG, NSDA; CEO, NSDC; Secretary, MSDE; JS, MSDE

b.Top 50 proposals under Innovate for Digital India Challenge

c.Top 50 best practices selected under SAGY for replication across the county by MoRD.

d.i-Saksham was presented as a model to develop tutorship as skill in difficult areas at workshop convened by MSDE

e.Centre for Innovation in Public Systems invited i-Saksham to present the innovative education delivery model.

f.Selected for N-Core Alpha program in Yr. 2017

g.Selected as part of the TFIx program (run by Teach for India)

h.Winner at ‘e-NGO’ challenge, organized by DEF

i.Winner at ‘Manthan’ Awards, organized by DEF

Our Programs:

Program

Program description

Focus

Teacher training program

18-30 yrs. youths from villages, who are either giving tuition or are interested in teaching are formed into groups of 10-15, and provided 3 months training in on of the selected community buildings

Pedagogy
Computer

Learning centre program

Follows 3 months training, and is focused on engaging with most potential tutors identified during 3 months training.

Centre level support i.e. infrastructure, assessment

School intervention

Tutors trained by i-Saksham working as volunteers in government schools

Given the geography we operate in (naxal areas) and the condition of school education in these areas, schools intervention may inspire teachers and community to deliver better in long-term, once they see children performing better with quality education support.

 

 

About the Founders:

Started by Niraj Gupta, Prashant Dwivediand Shailendra Yadav, our team has a very well balanced mix of business and technology. Junkart has built the tech from ground up so it can employ the existing ecosystem and solve the problem the stakeholders are facing – lack of visibility and coordination in recycling supply chain.

With two co-founders in technology – with a solid previous experience in building scalable products and one co-founder in operations with background in scrap management and strong hold on finances and operations, we understand both tech and this business very deeply

Niraj is an SRCC alumni while Prashant and Shailendra are computer engineers and have led technology teams to build multi million dollar products in their previous job.

 

The Problem:

For last several decades, there has been almost no progress in the way our recycling supply chain works. Whereas, our urban structures and lifestyle are nowhere similar to the decades old perception of India.

We now live in more constrained space and time schedule, we trust technology more than human beings,  we can summon almost everything – whenever we want and wherever we want. We are truly becoming a Just-In-Time society.

Unfortunately, as compared to our production and delivery systems, our disposal and destruction systems are not catching up fast enough and hence causing serious problems such as increasing global warming, landfills and a lot of other environmental threats.

There are problems at all levels of this disposal supply chain – right from collection to recycling/disposing units. We are unable to collect more than 85% of the recyclable items here in India itself because people are not aware that these items too can be recycled and even if they are, there is no easy way to send those items to recycling units. This forces people to throw away these materials with regular household waste, making the segregation process more difficult and hence, putting a toll on recycling efforts.

Therefore, a lot of our recycling units run with under supply of raw scrap materials, causing losses.

We hardly give any incentive for people and businesses to take interest in recycle their waste.
On societal and species level, we are annihilating our own ecosystem.

 

The Solution:

Junkart is an initiative to speed up our lagging disposal and destruction supply chain. By making people informed about the recyclable items they throw away every day and giving them an easy way to dispose and cash it.

There is already an withering ecosystem in place in India which used to be efficient at collecting and recycling the stuff discarded by commons. We are reconstructing it from ground up, backed with our solid technology to enable it to work with the urban challenges.
We have built Junkart’s app based model on our mobile technology infrastructure, which connects the recycling vendors with nearby sellers.

 

How It Works:

When a seller raises a new pickup request, it is forwarded to nearby vendor’s on their Junkart app, who can then accept it and visit the seller’s place at the scheduled time. Vendor then records the items bought by him on the Junkart app, which calculates the price and shows how much amount the vendor should pay to the seller. This amount then can be deducted digitally from the vendor’s account linked with Junkart app.

The transparent pricing and inventory management system helps the vendors keep an eye on their inventory and track profit. We are also building the technology to connect these vendors with large quantity traders and recycling units. The data acquired in process is highly useful for recycling units and urban planners and can help them make critical operational and strategic decisions.

Product Set:

Our growing product set includes a web platform (http://junkart.in)  for receiving and managing requests and dashboard for admins, a mobile app for sellers (on iOS App store as well as Google Play Store by the name of Junkart) and an app for vendors.

We have also built prototype of a smart recycling bin – Bob which can help authorities keep a tab on overflowing bins.

Operations

Since starting full time operations in September in South Delhi, we have grown to cover almost all of Delhi-NCR and are looking forward to setting up the network in Bengaluru also to start operations there. Other than this, we also frequently facilitate transactions in Mumbai and various parts of Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh too. Our network is 1000+ vendors strong.

A lot of organisations including restaurant chains, pathology testing lab brands, retail chains and malls and shopping centers are showing keen interest in availing our services. A few have signed up to avail the services too.

Forward:

We are on the path to expanding to Bengaluru and Mumbai in coming months while continuously improving the quality of service in currently operational areas. We are also in talks with recycling units understanding their challenges and designing our improving our platform to serve them better. We are rapidly moving on our way to fix the reverse supply chain.

We are also working on creating suits for sewage workers and trying to help municipalities manage city garbage more efficiently.