Dec 7, 2020

Digitally Literate Communities: Adapting to online

“A digitally inclusive world should allow young people, no matter their situation, to get access to education” - Henrietta H. Fore, UNICEF Executive Director

Inequities in access to Digital Literacy

The current technology paced world is defining and refining society in a plethora of ways, whilst digital deprivation of the underprivileged population of our country are subjected to being affected the most.

According to the 2017 – 2018 National Sample Survey Report on Education, only 24% of Indian households have internet facility. While 66% of India’s population live in the rural households, only 15% have access to internet. For urban households, the proportion is 42%.

An article by Scroll states that with the existing digital divide, expanding online education will push the digital have-nots to the periphery of the education system, thereby increasing inequity in educational outcomes.

The New Normal

The ongoing pandemic has brought to the fore, the urgent need of bridging these digital inequities as schools all over the world have shifted to remote learning. We also believe that fostering social and emotional skills will help build character, enable learners to be compassionate, empathetic, ethical and rational, and thereby prepare children for immediate and future challenges.

Bhumi has been effectively combating the unprecedented situation by providing e-learning opportunities for the children from our after-school community centres.

The digital literacy programme was initiated with the vision to create digitally empowered and skilled communities. Though we have been challenged with equipping the stakeholders with basic technical knowledge and availability of a device, we have successfully begun our online digital literacy workshops for 50 youth and children from the communities. The bi-weekly sessions are split into 10 session focusing on Basic computer science, Internet, Email, Mobile applications (Utility Based, Service Based & Learning Based), MS Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint), Internet Security and Banking. The programme also imparted two Soft Skill sessions for the Women and Youth of the Community to equip them with the necessary tools required for thriving in today’s world.

Bhumi, believes that incorporating social and emotional skills in the education system will help build character, enable learners to be compassionate, empathetic, ethical and rational, and thereby prepare children for future challenges. Bhumi’s Head, Heart and Love program nurtures Self Awareness, Self-Management, Social Awareness, Relationship Skills, and Responsible Decision Making in the individuals. Thus, five workshops were conducted for the children focusing on Self, Classroom Agreement, Kindness, Emotional Regulation, Gratitude and Nature Walk.

Feedback from some of the Beneficiaries...

“I like the digital literacy sessions very much and gain a lot of knowledge. I did not know how to open a computer nor use e-mail before these classes. Thank you, Bhumi, for arranging these sessions.”

- Sharmila (Youth Beneficiary)

“I have learned many things from these sessions, especially my ability in some tasks. I've enjoyed it thus far and it's a good way to spend my time usefully”.

- Shantosh Raj RK (Student Beneficiary)

“I have learned to use Gmail and how to operate a device such as a mobile phone or a computer. The sessions made me realise my ability and the skills within. I eagerly wait for Bhumi classes and enjoy the learning process.”

- Dheepika B (Student Beneficiary)

It has been a challenge thus far in getting the beneficiaries into the classes, but we have been actively following up with them on their progress and helping them learn new topics. This brings our team immense joy to be able to bring a positive change in the communities and equipping them to be digitally literate. We look forward to more such fruitful engagements with the children and the youth!

E-Session Photo
E-Session Photo
Oct 23, 2020

Rock n Roll! "Nationwide Nakshatra - Dance Fest"

Cover Pic
Cover Pic

Believe you can and you’re half way there!

The Present Scenario and Need:

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought in drastic changes in everyone’s routine and lifestyle causing distress/anxiety in most cases. Children especially, are affected due to school closures and not being able to connect with their circle of friends. Through this daunting situation, engaging in an any form of art helps a child to be hopeful, positive and stay connected with their inner-self.

Dance is a powerful ally for instilling many of the attributes of a growing child. It is a well-known fact that Dance has a multitude of core developments such as sensory, musicality, which aims to enhance creativity, coordination, perseverance, self-motivation, self-expression, concentration etc.

Bhumi’s Wings to Children’s Talents:

Bhumi’s prime focus has always been providing a platform for children to indulge in their holistic development through arts, sports and dance apart from quality education. Nakshatra Online 2020 – Bhumi’s Inter-Shelter Home Talent Fest is conducted nationally for children to showcase their non-scholastic flairs and increase their confidence plus compete against other children in a healthy competition.

Nakshatra's Rock 'n' Roll, an event organized by Bhumi Volunteers on 30thof August was a nationwide online dance competition exclusively for the children from shelter homes across the country. The preliminary rounds were conducted over a period of two months where 350 children from 250 shelter homes of all 29 states of India participated. The major dance styles performed by children were Kathak, Hip-hop, Contemporary, Bollywood, Jazz Funk, Bharatanatyam, Lavni, Rajasthani Folk etc. It was impressive to witness the passion of these children and most importantly, majority of them were self-taught.

The children were judged based on the dance videos sent and top 42 were selected to compete in the final round. The selected finalists were mentored and trained for the final round by Bhumi’s in-house dance team (Project de-Step) for a period of two weeks. 

The finalists were exhilarated to perform in front of famous choreographers like Terence Lewis, Salman Yusuff Khan, Kruti Mahesh, Jyothi D Tommaar, Vaibhav Ghuge, R.Rajarajan, Harry and Vijay Varman. The children expressed such poise, rhythm and confidence that blew the judges away! The judges were so warm and welcoming towards the children, encouraging and inspiring them towards their forte.

The famous dancer Shakti Mohan (and winner of Dance India Dance season 2) gave everyone a surprise by joining the event for a while to share her best wishes.

The Winners:

The final winners of Teen Feet category (age group of 12 – 18 years) were Subhu from Jaly Girls Home, Chaitra L from Prasanna Jyothi Home and Naveen from Shelter Trust. A big shout out was given to the winners of the Tiny Toes category (Age group of 6 – 11 years) namely, Palak from Prasanna Jyothi Home, Rekha Ravi from SOSCV and Manisha from Apne Sapne Welfare Society for showcasing their dancing skills at such a young age.

Certificates and Medals were couriered to the respective Homes for the Winners.Bhumi’s volunteers and team strive to believe in our ethos and provide children the opportunity to learn, grow and excel in what they do best – in this case, Dance!

Participants and Audience via Zoom
Participants and Audience via Zoom
Jul 27, 2020

Bhumi's Grocery Support to the Silent Victims of COVID-19: "Children at Shelter Homes"

Volunteer delivering the Groceries
Volunteer delivering the Groceries

According to news18, the government's helpline for children (1098) received 4.6 lakh calls during the first phase of the nationwide lockdown, 30% of which required COVID-19 related interventions,were simply pleas for food. A report published by the Medical Education and Drugs Department (MEDD) on 12th May states that 770 kids below the age of 10 have the coronavirus.

India, with a population of 1.3 billion people, faces the highest percentage of undernourishment and food insecurity. COVID-19 may just add on to the woes by putting both lives and livelihoods at risk.

With the vulnerable communities at large in India, the lockdown has led to children being bereft of grocery support, making them the silent victims of the pandemic. While the Government relief is making a difference amongst many low-income families and in mitigating the pandemic, it is important to practice solidarity, either through volunteering or by demonstrating other ways to combat the pandemic universally.

Hence, there is a pressing need to support children at shelter homes with necessary groceries and medicines to tackle and cope with the current situation, and help them build their immunity. Until July 25, 2020, Bhumi volunteers with support from donors like you have supported 6,193 children in 117 shelter homes across India with ~US$ 25,000 worth of groceries.

Bhumi is associated with around 200 orphanages, and the children in these orphanages are facing the brunt of this lockdown more than any of us. Mainly dependent on in-kind donations, these homes are now struggling to provide the basic three meals to the children living under their roof. Thus, Bhumi’s COVID project on grocery support to shelter homes aims to provide basic groceries such as rice, grains, pulses, vegetables, oil etc., along with medicines and toiletries such as soaps etc. to these homes. We have a strong team of volunteers who will call and assess the needs of these homes periodically. 

Our strong volunteer network has come together to aid through the pandemic and has built a crisis effective model to ensure that the needs of these homes are being met and tracked periodically.


  • Bhumi's volunteer coordinators call the respective shelter homes in their cities
  • The requirement by the homes formonth is recorded
  • The volunteers validate the needs with the number of children/staffs in these homes
  • A local grocery supplier/vendor is identified who delivers the supplies/medicines and the funds are transferred directly to the vendor

As Nelson Mandela once said “there can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way it treats its children.”

Children at shelter homes receiving the groceries
Children at shelter homes receiving the groceries
Volunteers giving groceries to centre management
Volunteers giving groceries to centre management


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