Newgen’s Digital Literacy Program Makes the Cut

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Newgen

India ambitious Digital India movement is catching up pace with the help of CSR funds.  Newgen Software Technologies Limited’s Newgen Digital Discovery Paathshala project is a test case of how to engage government-run schools effectively.

The Delhi-based firm is into Business Process Management (BPM), Enterprise Content Management (ECM) and Customer Communication Management (CCM) platforms with large, mission-critical solutions deployed at world’s leading banks, insurance firms, healthcare organizations, governments, BPOs and telecom companies. Priyadarshini Nigam, who is leading this initiative, shares a few insights with SustainabilityNext:

What has been achieved so far?  What impact has been made?

Our digital education initiative “Newgen Digital Discovery Paathshala” (NDDP) contributes towards two of the government’s core campaigns, ‘Digital India’ and ‘Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao’. The program focuses on providing essential skills to girl children, between the ages of 10-14, enrolled in government schools under the Delhi government. The objective is to make them digitally literate, while learning becomes more effective and engaging.

As a part of our NDDP program, we make use of digital tools such as iPads, audio-visuals, presentations, and use teaching methods customized as per language and skill sets of the children. The use of digital technology helps make the children technology-savvy, independent, self-reliant, and confident.  Our NDDP initiative is a step towards achieving sustainable development goal (SDG) number 4 and 5, namely promoting ‘Quality Education’ and ‘Gender Equality’.

We have doubled the head count from 1500+ to 3000+ students under the NDDP umbrella. We have so far been able to achieve a digital literacy rate of 63.93% in Harkesh Nagar, 83.42% in Tekhand and 100% in the Soami Nagar School. Criteria Digital literacy rate- The digital literacy is measured with class 8th students only who have been enrolled with the program for more than 1 year.

Mid-day Meal Program

Adequate nutrition is an integral part of the growth and well-being of children in their formative years. We support the mid-day meals of 3,600+ students in partnership with The Akshaya Patra Foundation at the government schools in the backward areas of Vrindavan, Uttar Pradesh, and Jhalawar, Rajasthan. This initiative contributes towards attaining of the SDG number 2 of achieving ‘Zero Hunger’.

Family-based Care Program

In pursuance with the CSR vision, Newgen collaborated with SOS Children’s Villages of India in the year 2014 to ensure holistic development of the associated children and their SOS mothers. Under this initiative, one family home in the SOS Children’s Village, Greenfields, Faridabad and three family homes in SOS Children’s Village, Bhopal are being supported by Newgen.

Personality Development Sessions

Newgen has developed a personality development program for the students from the economically weaker sections and the SOS Youth hostel. As a part of the program, personality development sessions are conducted to help these children build self-confidence, develop soft skills and choose the right career path. Newgen has catered to around 100+ students through these sessions.

What are Newgen’s future CSR plans?

While we are making continuous progress in our CSR journey, this is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of attaining our CSR vision. The company intends to upscale its current CSR initiatives and undertake/sponsor other CSR activities with utmost sincerity, dedication and passion so as to leave a sustainable imprint in the lives of the project beneficiaries.

We have partnered with Khushii, an NGO working for the upliftment of children with lesser means, to make 2,600 children literate through remedial classes. The program commenced in August 2019.

 Information and knowledge have become the cornerstones of societal development and are the key factors behind promoting and sustaining the implementation of all the SDGs. SDGs define a roadmap of progress that is equitable and inclusive. Newgen contributes to the SDGs through its CSR initiatives by doing its bit towards eradicating poverty and hunger, helping abandoned children and promoting education of the girl child.

What are the metrics of how quality of learning has improved since the inception of NDDP?

  • The NDDP project has brought about many positive changes in not only the capacity of the students but also their outlook towards the world.  Case studies depicting the changes brought in individual lives of specific project beneficiaries have been mentioned below. 
  • We have till date been able to achieve a digital literacy rate of 63.93% in Harkesh Nagar, 83.42% in Tekhand and 100% in Soami Nagar School
  • Community-based Program:  Newgen has initiated activities connecting the mothers of beneficiaries with the program. Mothers being an integral part of the community have to be empowered and educated to amplify the magnitude of change. As a part of this initiative, we educate mothers with digital mediums, disseminating information and generating awareness about important female-centric issues. We conduct sessions on menstrual hygiene and financial literacy in the schools specially for the mothers
  • Special Program for Slow Learners:  This is one of the newly added activities in the program. For the pilot program, one of Newgen’s interns was provided with a platform to conduct a well-defined internship program for the slow learners to bring them at par with their peers.

The outcome of the activity was largely positive. 70% of the targeted students enrolled in the pilot sessions became digitally sound. This initiative has become an integral part of the program. As a part of the program, we also provide internship to the college students. Through this, we make the young generation understand the value of imparting education to the under-privileged and giving back to the society.

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