Dear readers, 


For all those who are new here, Skill in Village is an after school program for students enrolled in vernacular medium government schools. The programme focuses on grades 5th-8th (upper primary and secondary) to equip the rural students with English communication and Life Skills. The mission of the program is to enable students of rural communities to become innovative changemakers and leaders by equipping them with 21st-century skills, hence enabling them to solve their local challenges and become global leaders.

Meet Siddappa!

Siddappa is a young boy studying in class 7 in the local Kannada medium school. His father is a daily wage worker in Hubballi. His mother is a homemaker, and she takes care of the family. Since his early school days, he had been observing his peers from the neighbourhood who go to English medium schools. He used to be in awe of how they could speak in  English. But, because of Siddappa’s family’s financial condition, they could not afford to send him to an English medium school or any spoken English classes. Siddappa’s wish of confidently speaking in English was being shadowed by his lack of self-confidence, opportunities and financial problems.
In the month of  September 2021, Skill in Village(SiV) program was introduced in Siddappa's school, and he was on cloud nine! Siddappa enrolled himself in the SiV program and started attending classes religiously. In SiV classes, teaching-learning is activity-based, where the students are actively involved. Within 3 months, the changes were visible in Siddappa's personality. He started greeting people in English, conversing with his classmates and peers in English, , etc.
This program not only helped Siddappa in learning how to communicate and express in English but also boosted his confidence. He started dreaming big and is now confident of achieving his goals.
“Stand up, Speak up, Rise up” - a unique initiative started in Shiggaon Cluster to provide a stage for the students to express themselves and to instill confidence among students. These speech competitions are being conducted in each centre of the Shiggaon Cluster. This is a glimpse of Mugali centres’ competition. 
Spell Bound - Galataga centre from Belagavi Cluster has conducted “Spell Bound” competition for the students. It created a stage for students to present their spelling skills and increase their confidence.  It was the 8th-grade students who were supported by their teacher to take ownership of organizing the event. A major attraction for the competition was the students themselves anchoring for the event.  
It is very important to have associations with networks of organisations and individuals who share a common purpose. These associations eventually lead to fruitful partnerships which allow for knowledge, experience, and resources to be shared for the larger good. Skill in Village program collaborated with Nirmaan to provide the students with information about scholarships and other future career opportunities. Rona cluster took the first step by inaugurating the initiative with the help of Education Department officials. 
Adam Sáenz earned his Ph.D. in School Psychology from Texas A&M University. He completed his predoctoral clinical training under a fellowship appointment to Harvard Medical School and has a postdoctorate in clinical psychology from the Alpert Medical School of Brown University. In this video, he talks about the power of the teacher.

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Deshpande Foundation · Deshpande Skilling · Airport Road · Hubli, Karnataka 580030 · India

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