Dharma Life launched Lighting Up Young Minds Learning (LUYM Learning) a digital tutoring programme for children in rural areas whose education has been impacted by Covid-19 disruptions across its network. The programme plans to reach over 3 lakh children in rural areas through varied activities including E-reading, MOOC session and vaccination awareness videos. The programme deploys Dharma Life’s village-level female changemakers, called Dharma Life Entrepreneurs, to connect children with guided digital lessons.
LUYM Learning aims to ensure the continuity of quality education, awareness of health outcomes and development of life skills for rural children through guided digital lessons. The local Dharma Life Entrepreneur will leverage the existing educational infrastructure wherever possible to deliver the lesson. Dharma Life has already successfully piloted the model with 150 children across India.
Dharma Life is a social enterprise with a network of 17,000 rural Dharma Life Entrepreneurs (DLEs) with over 75% women, spread over 50,000 villages and 14 states of rural India.
According to Dharma Life Founder & CEO, Gaurav Mehta, “The COVID-19 pandemic has adversely impacted the education of children globally. In these unprecedented times, the education of approximately 290 million children in India has been impacted, with six million out of school. The effect of COVID-19 on education of rural children has been especially detrimental, with no technical support and access to smartphones. We are trying to bridge this gap with our Lighting Up Young Minds programme to ensure the continuity of quality education, awareness of health outcomes and development of 21st century skills (World Economic Forum) for rural children through guided digital lessons.”
Dharma Life has developed various learning modules with a focus on peer-based learning covering topics such as STEM and 21st century skills. These courses are being offered in combination with English and Mathematics courses. In a span of next 2 months, the initiative will look forward to scaling up LUYM Learning to reach a greater number of students across India.
LUYM Learning is part of Lighting Up Young Minds (LUYM), a programme which has reached more than 2.5 Million children till date across 14 states in India running behavior change campaigns, reading sessions, extra-curricular activities (arts, music and sports), etc. The LUYM initiative is a part of Dharma Life’s ‘We for Village COVID response’ which is supported by various partners including TRANSFORM (Unilever, EY, FCDO), Wheeler Institute of Business and Development at the London Business School, elea Foundation, Good Energies Foundation, Shell Foundation, DOEN Foundation and Accenture, to name a few.
Celebrating International Literacy Day by raising awareness for literacy and education among children and families in rural India, Dharma Life conducted a massive open online course session (MOOC) with rural children. During the programme, WhatsApp was used to share an E-book across India, and share reactions with a post-reading activity. Rural children also used their smartphones to record videos raising awareness for vaccination.