Grameen Shikkha, which means "Grameen Education" in Bangla, is a sister organization to Grameen Bank. It was setup in 1997 to use education as a tool for the improvement of life standards of poor women and children, thus creating a society free of illiteracy and poverty. Since 2003 GS has operated a successful scholarship program. 75 sponsors currently support 266 scholarships. GS plans to support 600 scholarships in 2005. HM Queen Sofia of Spain is a major patron of the scholarship program.