India being a developing country, it is the responsibility of the country’s youth to take it to the next level. Although we are already on the track but still it’s a long way to go and it can only be achieved together by the society. The current atmosphere in India is that of a startup culture. Even though various businesses are opening up across the country, there is a great need for these ventures to aim at helping and developing the society. One of the ways can be collaboration of NGOs and startups, another could be promoting the startups which have great social impact and are able to enhance the living index of the countrymen.
1. Spread education and awareness
Education is the key role to success and only education can take the country to the next level. One of the major factors why education lacks in the country is lack of awareness. People are not aware about the power of education; it is the duty of each and every individual of the society to spread its power otherwise we will not even touch the line of our aim.
There are several startups that have come up in the education field. Many are providing services that can enhance the learning experience of millions of students. Apart from education, there is lack of awareness among the students. There is lack of expert advice on issues related to education. Some of the startups such as CareerGuide.com have already taken steps to make a social impact and enrich the lives of students who don’t have access to technology. The startup has collaborated with various NGOs and foundations who are able to propagate the information more widely.
2. End Child labor
Child labor is considered exploitative by several international organisations, but here in India child labor is practiced not just secretly but also openly in several places. Many organizations are taking part actively for eradicating it totally from the society and also trying to give chance to these children.There is need to encourage and make people understand the importance of knowledge and many NGOs are setting an example for society.
The startups can come forward in extending their help to solve the issue of child labor. The need of a child is to get education at the right age and then get employed. Several startups are working in providing education to students and others are working in job search. What is needed now is the collaboration of such start-ups so that a long-run benefit could be gained by the students of poor background.
Several NGOs are already working in this field and start-ups need to work alongside on the same pattern. One of the NGO GharAngna, EkPayaraSapna was started by Ms Kusum Kohli. She started teaching 20 years ago in Bihar and then later on shifted to Gurgaon to teach children of security guards, laborers and maids. The NGO was started in order to support needy children by providing them education and thus they have taken the first and the most important step in ending child labor.
3. Violence against women
There have been several cases in the recent times against women where women have been victimized and abused physically or mentally. Even the capital of the country has been marked as the Rape Capital by many. Even after 70 years of independence, women can’t go out alone in the night. In gender equality index, India ranks 122 out of 138 nations and this is not surprising considering the safety issues for women in the country. When 83% men are literate, only 63% of women are literate and this creates a big gap in the equality.
However, startups can work collaboratively with government organisations in providing safety to the women with the help of technological advancement and innovations. Mobile applications can be highly useful in supporting women and their concerns. There are several startups which can be termed as social ventures which have already taken steps in this arena.
One such startup is MFI-Life line mobile platform, an initiative started by ZMQ. It imparts information to rural women regarding healthcare and finances. Here again mobile technology is being used by the organisation to impart awareness among the women and empower them in different segments.
There are many more social issues prevailing in the country. Some of them are crime, alcoholism, drug abuse, corruption, poverty, population growth etc. If not all, at least some of these can be addressed by the collaborative efforts of startups and specialized organisations. Startups hold the ability to provide innovation and technology to combat the issues and NGOs can provide the zeal and the right strategy to target the problems.
This is a guest post by Aakanksha Aggarwal, Founder, Craft Driven Research.
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