Mumbai/Chennai: Avtar Human Capital Trust (AHCT), the non-profit arm of Avtar Group, India’s premier Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Solutions firm, gave away scholarships to girl children who were part of Project Puthri, a programme to build career intentionality amongst girls studying in Corporation and Government-aided schools in Tamil Nadu.
The scholarships worth Rs 2 Lakhs were awarded to the girls by Dr Saundarya Rajesh, Founder – President, Avtar Group and Managing Trustee of AHCT, in the presence of the Australian Ambassador for Gender Equality, Stephanie Copus Campbell AM and Australia’s Consul General to South India, Sarah Kirlew, at the Avtar office premises. These Puthri scholars are pursuing education in STEM, Arts and Commerce at various colleges in and around Chennai.
The girls who received scholarships have undergone training as part of Project Puthri, which is India’s first-ever developmental project that seeks to create career intentionality among underprivileged girl students. These young girls were trained in 40 different skills that will enable them to build intentional careers post their tertiary education.
From the time of its launch five years ago by Avtar Human Capital Trust, Project Puthri has changed the destinies of over 11,000 girls studying in Government and Corporation Schools in Puducherry and 10 districts of Tamil Nadu. Project Puthri volunteers have clocked more than 64,500 hours in 10 different regions delivering over 8500 sessions in 100 schools.
“One hundred and fifty-five girl children have benefitted from the scholarships so far, and we aim to support the education of 250 girl students across Tamil Nadu and Puducherry and help them build sustainable careers for themselves. As India prepares to be a $5 trillion economy, it is important that girl children get the best of education, career guidance and mentoring. These young girls will form the workforce for tomorrow leading India to a developed economy,” said Dr Saundarya Rajesh, Managing Trustee, AHCT, Founder – President of Avtar Group.
Speaking at the event, Australian Ambassador for Gender Equality, Stephanie Copus Campbell AM, said, “I want to congratulate the scholarship winners for their hard work and efforts. I have spent my entire career, over 30 years, fighting for gender equality. My current role as Ambassador is to work internationally to promote gender equality, and to share with and learn from the countries that I visit. Every single person should have the opportunity to realise their full potential, regardless of their gender. Without gender equality, we will not have peace, security, or socio-economic development. Investing in women and girls is powerful. When a woman is educated, her children are more likely to be healthy, educated, and secure. When women have opportunities to participate in the economy and earn, they can add billions to the GDP. I was delighted to see the students receiving scholarships. I am excited about a positive future for each and every one of them.”