India’s Yuwa Foundation Needs Your Help To Continue Paving The Path To Success For Girls.

Against all odds, and especially due to Covid 19, girls in Jharkhand, India, now risk losing a five-year-old school that gave them the opportunity for a brighter future.

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Amsterdam | November 2020 – Yuwa ("youth" in Hindi) is a non-profit organisation founded in 2009 that works with vulnerable girls in Ormanjhi, a rural area in the eastern Indian state of Jharkhand. In this region, 6 out of 10 girls drop out of school and become married children. In June 2015, Yuwa School was launched in the Hutup village of Jharkhand. The goal is to enable students to reach their full academic potential, develop critical and creative thinking skills, and become compassionate and empowered leaders in their community. The Yuwa School is currently non-residential, with all students living with their own families in neighboring villages.

Yuwa creates a culture of empowerment through:
  • A girls' preparatory school for 100 students
  • Football for more than 500 players
  • Weekly life skills workshops for all participants
  • Leadership development and coaching training for 45 local youth - 85% of them are young women.

Yuwa's programmatic depth has a life-changing impact on each participant, enabling them to break out of the cycle of poverty permanently.

Society teaches girls to fit in. Yuwa coaches girls to stand out. Yuwa School
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Covid-19 has had a significant impact on Yuwa.

More child marriages are happening because of the lockdown. With schools closed, girls are being forced into child marriage now more than ever. Yuwa School is committed to keeping 100% of our girls free from the shattering consequences of child marriage. Distance education--led by Yuwa’s team of qualified and passionate teachers--is essential, regardless of the connectivity challenges. 

Indeed, on March 17, Yuwa had to suspend its sports and educational programs due to the spread of coronavirus and increased social isolation in Jharkhand State. Yuwa has taken steps to allow students to continue classes and maintain contact between students and coaches.

Yuwa School was one of the first schools in the entire state, with 31 million people, to reopen online, despite the fact that the students are from subsistence farming families.

When Covid-19 banned the girls from gathering, Yuwa coaches immediately developed a plan to keep their teams together using WhatsApp and SMS. The Yuwa coaches called and texted 450 players regularly: they encouraged the girls to participate in fun, long-distance physical challenges with their teammates, shared vital health information to help the girls protect themselves and their families, and verified dangerous misinformation.  

Meanwhile, men and boys in rural Jharkhand ignored the rules of confinement and continued to gather in groups to play sports, play and drink. The Yuwa coaches understood the reasons for the social distancing and suspension from sports, but it was bitter to see the injustice of the men continuing to play without consequences.

How can people help ?

Yuwa's partners have included FIFA, BookASmile, Microsoft, Reliance Foundation, Mercedes-Benz, Feed a Billion, among others.

Yuwa invests in top educators, but spends 60% less per student per month than top private schools. Each student draws on her resources to contribute to his or her own education. Girls up to grade 7 each pay monthly tuition fees at ₹250 and from grade 8 onward at ₹650, covering 3% and 9% of the total cost of their education.

In 2020-21, Yuwa is raising funds for:

  • Student sponsorship: With a donation of ₹6 701 (77 €) per month, you can sponsor a girl's education, transportation and supplementary nutrition.
  • Teacher sponsorships and endowments to provide salaries more commensurate with the training and experience of the teachers and future administrators they seek to attract and retain talented staff.
  • A permanent Yuwa School campus offering inspiring spaces and quality residential housing for students and staff
  • University tuition fees, board and lodging for the 9 students of the Yuwa School high school students going to university
Here are some examples of Yuwa success stories: 
  • Yuwa is the 2019 recipient of the Laureus Sport for Good Award.
  • 2 students obtained full scholarships at Mondragon University in Spain
  • 2 students receive a full scholarship to Ashoka University in India
  • 3 students obtained full scholarships at Krea University in India
  • One 11th grade student accepted into the Yale Young Global Scholars Program
  • 74 girls (out of 90 enrolled) had a school attendance rate of 95% or more during the school year (while most girls in their communities attend school only 2-3 days a week on average)

And many more... [ See Yuwa School profile linked below ]

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Jharkhand is one of the most challenging places on earth to be a girl

  • 6 out of 10 girls drop out of school and become child brides.
  • Jharkhand has the lowest ratio of teachers per public school in India and ranks among the worst for female literacy and human trafficking.
  • It is also ranked as India's worst state for sanitation and has some of the highest rates of child malnutrition.

But Yuwa has found a way to make a difference: 

  • Yuwa's first graduating class completed Grade 12 in April 2020. This class of nine students joined the Yuwa School when it was established in 2015. 
  • 100% of Yuwa students passed their 10th standard national exams in 2018-2019.
  • Yuwa School is committed to keeping 100% of our girls free from the shattering consequences of child marriage.
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Yuwa’s programs aim to put girls’s futures back into their own hands, to rewrite the script that society has assigned them. Yuwa does more than simply delay marriage until the legal age - we are enabling the girls to break out of the cycle of poverty and make powerful decisions about their futures. Franz Gastler, Yuwa Co-founder
Call to action 
  • Global attention for Yuwa and the Yuwa girls, and the important work they’re doing
  • Interview Yuwa's founder and/or interview graduating girls, teacher or coaches.
  • Share crowdfunding for school + need for a new corporate sponsor. 
  • Opportunity to sponsor a student, a coach or a teacher.
More information: 
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About Yuwa 

Yuwa is an internationally renowned non-profit organization and means "youth" in Hindi. The organisation works specifically with girls from poor families in rural Jharkhand, India - a place where girls are at risk of child marriage and human trafficking. It is a program that uses team sports and education to build character, confidence and courage. It's a place where girls who don't yet know their worth can come together to compete, achieve goals and create a better future for themselves. Yuwa prepares girls to break the cycle of poverty - permanently.

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