Asha for Education is a non-profit organization dedicated to the support of basic education in India. Asha, which means hope in many Indian dialects, was founded at the University of California, Berkeley in 1991 and has since grown to over 65 chapters scattered throughout the United States, Europe, East Asia and India. Each of these chapters raises funds to support various education-related projects in India.
Since its inception, Asha has partnered with more than 800+ NGOs from across 24 states in India and has disbursed in excess of $25 million. In 2012 alone, Asha has disbursed $2+ million and has supported the education of 250,000+ kids in India directly and many hundreds of thousands more indirectly.
Asha Toledo’s Story
Asha Toledo Chapter was founded in spring of 2002 by a Unviersity of Toledo student Ranjeet Banarjee with support from other students Unmesh Chinte and Maruthi Devarakonda followed by Srikanth Pilla & Srivatsan Kannan. These initial volunteers started this chapter due to a strong urge to give something back to their motherland and improve the quality of life back home. These volunteers understood the importance of education without which they would have not come this far in life and the need to provide such opportunities to the underprivileged. Asha Toledo initially started as a satellite chapter of Asha Detroit supporting their projects and then became an independent full functioning chapter in 2005. Today, the chapter draws members from across University of Toledo, alumni and the Toledo community. Asha Toledo is also a registered student chapter at the Unitiversity of Toledo. The members of this Chapter are a close knit group of dedicated individuals working towards a common goal.
The aim of the group is to generate awareness amongst UT students & the greater Toledo community about social situation and educational needs of underprivileged children in India, in-order to collectively support and provide financial assistance to grassroots level institutions. Every year, the group brings together the community with fun-filled and colorful events to generate funds to support several education projects. Members of Asha Toledo Chapter not only help provide financial assistance to the projects, but also maintain a close contact with the organizations and projects in India year-round and provide updates to the community through their community events, website & regular newsletters.
To maximize the Asha Toledo’s outreach, our group selects diverse education related projects from various parts of India including rural education, education of girl children, vocational training and non-formal education, education and support for physically/mentally challenged children as well as teacher training programs. Our chapter also provides other essential support such as medical help, health camps, mid day meals, transportation etc. Asha Toledo Chapter works closely with other Asha chapters to ensure quality support is provided to educational efforts in India.