ADARINI - Cherished Girl Child

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ADARINI - Cherished Girl Child: Adolescents’ Demands for Rights through Innovative Nurturing Initiatives

Year Founded:
Project Stage:
$50,000 - $100,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Education is power. Without education, empowerment is a mere word only. At NISHTHA, education is aimed at rousing the self-esteem and dignity of girls so that they become conscious of their own rights and fight for social change and lead a dignified life.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

With education,girls will start leading dignified life,become local voice to sensitize community to send girls to school
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

Women and girls are victims of discrimination, violence and injustice. Gross dropout rate of girls from Standard I to X is more than 80%. The school attendance for girls falls with increasing age and they are prone to trafficking and child marriage. West Bengal stands at number three position in child marriage in India with an average of 54.9%. Many landmark laws have been formulated but their impact on grass root level is little.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

Ensure admission of 100% Class IV pass out girls of 110 villages of 13 Gram Panchayets of Magrahat II Block of South 24 Parganas district of West Bengal, India, to High school and they are retained in formal education upto Class X; and make them well equipped with adequate knowledge, information and training. Build a positive consensus among the parents, stakeholder and community as a whole on the rights of the girl children, and against gender discrimination and gender based violence; by ensuring education friendly and gender sensitive environment in family and community. Reduce the century old prevailing huge gender gap, the root cause of all violence, discrimination and injustice against women and girls.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Among many stories, a fascinating satisfaction Nishtha had received when a young daughter of a commercial sex worker establishes herself as a part of the mainstream society. The four year old girl was raised by Nishtha with other 41 sex workers’ children. She completed her school and went to college hiding her identity with Nishtha’s help. In 2013, when in BA 2nd year, she got a government service. Now she will never return to hell of a brothel. Nishtha’s only expectation was that she become a part of mainstream society and live with dignity. She has broken the chain of profession of a commercial sex worker continued by her grandmother and mother, the generation has turned to a dignified life with Education only.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

Nishtha prepared 1220 out of school girls and admitted them into formal schools. In three years, rate of child marriage has come down from nearly 60% to 45%. The programme has provoked the community to send more girls to schools. A small group has emerged from the community which has become a stakeholder of the programme. 2. Fourteen trafficked girls were rescued and 155 girls were saved from child marriage. 3. Strong women’s and adolescent girls’ groups have emerged. 4. After five years, 100% Class IV passed out girls of 13 Gram Panchayets will take admission in High School. The dropout rate of 72.6% will come down to 22.6%. The rate of child marriage will come down from 45% to 10%. Gram Panchayet will have one active Child Protection Committee for advocating and lobbying. A network will be built among government front line service providers, women’s group, girls’ groups and CPSs.

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

Create strong awareness among parents and community leaders on Right to Education Act and gender discrimination. Develop a network and strengthen relationship between Government service providers and community. Advocacy for efficient procurement and delivery system of learning resources to meet curriculum needs. Rehabilitation work identified and carried out to main streaming the out of school girls. Formation and strengthening of women’s groups, girls’ groups and GP level Child Protection committees to play a proactive role to ensure retention of targeted girls in schools and protection.

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

A major step towards sustainability would be generation of strong awareness in the community and to prove that if given opportunity, the women and girls also can do miracles and grow up to true human beings. Once this awareness is generated, after five years of project, the community will continue the initiative which will lead to the sustainability of the programme and automatically a pressure group will be formed and play role of a watchdog.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

In the project areas of Nishtha, no other organization is working for the empowerment of girls and women because the number of women’s groups has gone down drastically in West Bengal.

Founding Story

Johora Khatoon is a 14 year girl and a member of Nishtha’s Kishori Bahini and first daughter of the family to go to school. One day she ran to Nishtha office and informed that her marriage has been settled after three days. But her dream is to pass secondary education. Nishtha negotiated with her guardians and local leaders. In a big meeting pressure was created on a 14 year old little girl by saying that she is characterless and she has to prove that she bears a good character. Johora declared boldly that she wants to complete secondary examination or else she commit suicide. Kishori Bahini informed Police who threatened the priest and parents. She got two years time and this year passed secondary examination in 1st Division.


Nishtha’s team for this project only will consist of 25 full time staff members who are experienced in this sector, qualified and dedicated social workers. The team will be headed by a Secretary and Project Manager. Every year 15 volunteers will be created from the local newly formed groups for expansion of the work.
About You
Nishtha Centre for the Development of Women & Children
About You
First Name


Last Name


About Your Project
Organization Name

Nishtha Centre for the Development of Women & Children

How long has your organization been operating?

More than 5 years

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Organization Country


Country where this project is creating social impact


What awards or honors has the project received?
Funding: How is your project financial supported?

Individuals, Foundations, NGOs.


The project has so far received two national level awards. In 2011, Nishtha had received ‘Apeejay Volunteer Award’ a national level award for preparing local level volunteers from among the victims of violence and destitute women and carrying on project with these volunteers who are the backbone of Nishtha at present. In 2014, Nishtha again received another national level award ‘Vivekananda Medal’ from Ramkrishna Mission for its work on empowerment of most vulnerable and violence, discrimination and injustice victim girl children.

Primary Target Age Group

13 - 17.

Your role in Education

Counselor, Social Worker.

Please specify which of the following best applies:

I am applying on behalf of a particular program or initiative, Other.

The type of school(s) your solution is affiliated with (if applicable)

Public (tuition-free).

Intervention Focus

Childcare, Community.

Does your project utilize any of the innovative design principles below?

Putting Children in Charge: Giving children a voice and cultivating agency via experiential learning, project-based learning, and civic engagement.

Is your project targeted at solving any of the following key barriers?

Lack of structures to facilitate meaningful community ownership in learning process: It is challenging to ensure parents and the broader community are involved as full co-owners in the learning process.


Providing new ideas, innovative strategies, inspire with effective experiences on group formation, sharing to find out different


Nishtha has huge experience in group formation, build ownership among the communities especially women, and create volunteers an

What key learning outcomes does your work seek to improve?

1. Innovative and joyful teaching methods.
2. Effective leadership building, training module for adolescent girls.
3. Successful sensitization process of decision makers of the family and community..

Secondary Form
PROGRAM DESIGN CLARITY: We are hungry to know more about what exactly your model consists of. Please succinctly list a) what main activities are you doing with your beneficiaries, b) where you carry out the activities? c) how often? d) for how many hours? e) who delivers the services? and f) any other brief details
INSPIRATION: What do you consider the most important trends or evidence that inspire you to believe the world is ready to Re-imagine Learning? Please elaborate.
LEARNING THROUGH PLAY: What does “learning through play” mean to you and why it is a must-have, instead of a nice to have?
SUSTAINABILITY: Please list a quick breakdown of your funding, indicating the percentage that comes from each source.
MODEL: How does your mission relate to your business model (i.e. Non-profit, for-profit or hybrid)?
FUNDING PRIORITIES: If your organization were given $20K in unrestricted funding today, how would you use it? Why?
PARTNERSHIPS: Tell us about your partnerships that enhance your approach.
COLLABORATIONS: Have you considered or initiated partnerships with any of the other Challenge Pacesetters? If so, please share.
VISION: If you had unlimited funding, and you could fast forward 15 years to when your program has been able to achieve wild success - what will it have achieved?
IMPACT - KEY METRICS: Please list the key data points that you would cite as evidence that you are able to achieve lasting learning outcomes. Please also share one data point for which you most hope to see better results over time
IMPACT - REPORTING SAMPLE: Please attach any examples of your impact reporting. [optional]:
RESEARCH AND EVIDENCE: Please link or attach any research or evidence resource you are open to sharing more widely [optional]. Building research and evidence is a key aim of this initiative, and the resources you share may be chosen for listing in the Center for Education Innovations library:
SOURCE: If applicable - who created the research or evidence you are choosing to share? :
IMPACT - REACH: How many people did your project directly engage in programmatic activities in the last year?

STUDY: Has an external evaluation or study been conducted of your organization?

Other (please specify)
Number of Employees:

Number of Volunteers:

APPROACHES: Given the complexity of play, it is not surprising that there have been numerous research attempts to categorize the different types and approaches! Please indicate which of the following your project focuses on.

Other (please specify)
AFFILIATION: Please specify if your organization has any existing affiliations with the LEGO Group.