All children require the right opportunities to expand their potential and nurture their dreams, to go on to become some of India’s future leaders. This is how Naveen, a 12-year-old hailing from a poor family in Chittoor (Andhra Pradesh) went on to win a National Science Award by the Ministry of Science and Technology. The young boy was always affected by how the smoke from the chulha troubled his mother while cooking dinner every night. Naveen’s concern for his mother is the reason behind his invention of a smokeless chulha that has been created using easily accessible raw materials like coconut shells. The smokeless chulha is a great initiative that is eco-friendly and easy-to-use and is being adopted by nearby villages as well.
Before the invention, Naveen was at the brink of permanently discontinuing his education to help his father sell vegetables and support the family income. But Naveen found the right support system in CRY that supported his aspirations and curiosity. The staff at the CRY project in his village intervened when Naveen became more absent in school and eventually counselled his parents. It is a matter of pride that Naveen’s invention soon led him to become an Ashoka Youth Venturer and get selected for the Sakura Science Plan that is a prestigious exchange program in Japan for budding scientists.
Like Naveen, several children do not have access to any of the essential amenities to live a dignified life. Many children are either engaged in child labour in India or carrying out household chores. Census 2011 expands further on that by stating that there are 33 million child labourers between 0-18 years in India. In 2018-19, CRY’s efforts have freed 149 villages from the practice of child labour, and its education programs have resulted in 1,74,163 children attending school, between the ages of 6-18 years.
CRY supports and encourages the education of children in India and works passionately towards the cause. It is with the help of NGOs like CRY that several underprivileged children are getting to follow their dreams and become accomplished adults.