ASSET India Foundation

The primary mission of the ASSET is to provide computer literacy for education towards alternate livelihood and as a means of AIDS prevention. The program is designed to assist the children to attain a level of education and familiarity with technology that will enable them to free themselves from being chained to the same profession. The ASSET India Foundation supports Education of the children using Computer Based Functional Literacy and small business ownership using Microfinance.
Aug 13, 2007

Observations from a project visit

Photo - children learning Microsoft office
Photo - children learning Microsoft office

In the greater Chennai region, many women resort to sex-work in order to survive. As a result, there are nearly 10,000 children of sex-workers that are ostracized from their communities, keeping them from acquiring the skills needed for gainful employment.

Ray Umashankar and Abishek Kumar founded a program to help train these children so they will be able to find employment. ASSET teaches these children valuable skills such as computer programming, accounting, and other skills useful in the IT and Business Process Outsourcing that are booming in Chennai. Currently, the children are learning essential Microsoft Office tools.

Once students complete the course, ASSET works with local placement agencies (i.e. Ma Foi) to find them jobs. Most of the IT and BPOs offer jobs for 4-5 hours per week where employees can earn an average of 5,000 rupees.

In order for the ASSET Center to be successful, the project leaders work closely with IT companies and BPOs to develop a curriculum that teaches the specific skills the companies look for in potential employees. Also, since all public instruction is taught in English, the ASSET Center is in the process of finding a volunteer organization to help find English tutors to help the students.

Currently, classes are 15 hours per week. Students take three classes, which run 4-6 hours each. To encourage students to attend, each student receives travel vouchers to pay for their transportation fees. Upon finishing the course, students receive a certificate of completion.

As a result of the success of the ASSET Center in Chennai, there are several plans for a major expansion of the project.

Project Goals: - Have one instructor in each center that will run three classes for three batches of students. - 3 centers established by March (two in Chennai, one in Gorapur) - Centers established in five cities by the end of 2007 - 10-15 Placement organizations for employment for each center - 5 NGO partners in each city to help with outreach and support - Make the entire program community-run - Hire country manager by 2008

Photo - teacher goes over some computer basics
Photo - teacher goes over some computer basics
Jul 2, 2007

Aptech training/Microsoft software-June Report

JUNE 2007 REPORT 1. English classes are in progress at the ASSET centers in Delhi, Chennai, Kolkata and Gorakhpur 2. Proposals have been submitted to Dell Foundation for DELL hardware donations for cities where Dell has a presence. 3. Microsoft India will donate software and the Unlimited Potential program to all ASSET's NGO partners. 4. APTECH (www.aptech-education) the computer training company with the largest market share in India and China is providing training in the ASSET centers in Chennai and Kolkata (see attached) 5.APTECH will also help with placements of our gradutes in internships/jobs. 6. I have been introduced to Rufina Fernandes, CEO of NASSCOM Foundation NASSCOM is India's National Association of Software and Service Companies, the premier trade body and the chamber of commerce of the IT software and services industry in India. NASSCOM is a global trade body with over 1100 members, of which over 250 are global companies from the US, UK, EU, Japan and China. NASSCOM's member companies are in the business of software development, software services, software products, IT-enabled/BPO services and e-commerce.


Attachments:
Jun 14, 2007

Progress report

Present enrollments are:

Chennai- 60 students Kolkata: 22 Gorakhpur-20 Delhi-60 Hyderabad-20 Bangalore and Pune are yet to start.

Mr. S.S.Krishnan, currently the Executive Chairman of Credit Information Bureau (India) Limited ( CIBIL-www.cibil.com) will join ASSET as its India Country manager in November 2007. Mr. Krishnan has over 36 years of banking experience with State Bank of India (SBI) where he retired as Deputy Managing Director and Corporate Development Officer. .

Firstsource (www.firstsource.com) has expressed interest in developing a plan for hiring ASSET graduates. Firstsource is among India's leading BPO companies providing business process management services to global leaders in Banking & Financial Services, Telecom & Media and Healthcare. We are working on the "ASSET Wireless Mesh Network" (AWMN) project. AWMN will allow data processing projects to be sent over wireless networks from Metro cities in India to interior and border towns where there is a large population of trafficking victims and children of women in prostitution. AWMN has immense possibilities, especially in reducing the migration form rural to urban areas which is the leading cause for the formation of slums. We are working on strategy for a pilot project with Rajendra Joshi, Managing trustee of Saath (www.saath.org) a very reputable Ahmedabad based NGO and Gagan Sethi, CEO of Janvikas in Vadodhra. The wireless network infrastructure plan (AWMN) is on the basis that if projects from the U.S can be outsourced to India, we can certainly do the same within India. The proposal is based on how technology can be used to outsource data entry projects from a major hub/metro city in India to the outlying remote interior and border towns.

This plan will engage the best technical minds in India and the U.S and also allow students to live and work in their own towns and earn a livelihood using modern communications technology.

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