Spark the Rise Round 2 WinnersNews & Updates | January 16, 2012
A student from Chandigarh, a businessman from Delhi, and an...
Our goal with Spark the Rise was to help create a community of like-minded individuals who are thinking innovatively and are working hard to help India rise. We’re thrilled to introduce you to the 18 Grand Finalists who embody this spirit and exemplify the new entrepreneurial spark that is taking India by storm.
Read on, vote, and make your voice heard!
View all our finalist and a summary of what their projects are below:
|Finalist #1||Finalist #2||Finalist #3|
|Finalist #4||Finalist #5||Finalist #6|
|Finalist #7||Finalist #8||Finalist #9|
|Finalist #10||Finalist #11||Finalist #12|
|Finalist #13||Finalist #14||Finalist #15|
|Finalist #16||Finalist #17||Finalist #18|
Vishisht Bhatia, educated in New Delhi but originally from Bijnor, Uttar Pradesh, is giving back to his community by providing employment opportunities to rural workers in BPO centers. His goal? To improve employability at the grassroots level and to better the lives of rural youth. His project is off to a booming start and initial results have been very positive. Click here to vote for Vishisht!
Vikrant and Vishant, two brothers from Varanasi, are providing shopkeepers and consumers with an eco-friendly alternative to polythene bags. The profits from this venture go toward the brothers’ NGO, Helping Hand Society, which works to keep underprivileged children in school and encourages them to pursue basic and higher education. Lend a Helping Hand and vote for Vikrant and Vishant here.
Pranav, along with fellow classmates, is working to develop a radio-based program that will allow rural villagers to learn more about how they can benefit from governmental and non-profit schemes, educational programs, and healthcare projects – all while keeping them posted on the weather and current crop prices. Broadcast your voice and vote for Pranav’s project here!
Farms n’ Farmers helps farmers to increase their earning potential by providing them with 360 degree solutions and advising them at every stage, from evaluating their soil to identifying optimal crops to connecting farmers to markets and ensuring that their produce is sold for the maximum price. Join the next Green Revolution and help countless farmers in India by voting for Farms n Farmers here!
Ananth Kumar and his school, Kaliyuva Mane, are teaching 66 rural children math, history, and how to read and write – and instilling in them a love for learning. The school encourages rural students left out of the formal education system to learn through their own talents and curiosities. Give a home and education to more children and vote for Ananth’s project here.
Astitva is a program that helps underprivileged students aged 13-25 learn the life skills they need for a successful career. Each student receives 60 intensive hours of practical experience, discussion, and theory and is paired with a mentor to help him or her to explore career goals and improve their interpersonal skills. Astitva needs a grant to expand – vote for them here.
Arathi Manay is on a mission to heal Puttenahalli Lake, whose once-pristine 13 acres have become a marshy garbage dump as Bangalore developed. The Puttenahalli Neighborhood Lake Improvement Trust (PNLIT) aims to revitalize the lake and it’s supported entirely by donations and other funding. To continue making Puttenahalli Lake a place of natural beauty and a wildlife habitat, vote for Arathi here.
The Desi Cow – one of India’s most iconic symbols – is being threatened by the existence of more productive, efficient cows. To combat this, Gopal Agrawal has set up a collective manufacturing unit that produces high quality cow urine and dung-based products using Desi-cow urine and dung bought from local farmers. To preserve the Indian cow, promote more sustainable organic farming, and increase rural employment, vote for Krishi Go Sanskriti here.
SAM (Self-Assessment and Management) workshops aim to revolutionize the mindset of the young and to encourage them to contribute toward society. Through musical and dance performances, theater workshops, and motivational speeches, the SAM team hopes to endow every attendee with the knowledge and determination to become an active, global citizen. Vote for SAM here.
The Satya Special School is an integrated center based in Pondicherry that works to empower children with special needs. Founded in 2003, it provides free services to any child who needs them, irrespective of socioeconomic conditions – and offers the expertise of psychologists, physiotherapists, speech therapists, occupational therapists, and social workers. To help Chitra continue to reach out to children with special needs, vote here.
Make a Difference (MAD) is a youth platform that provides safe learning eco-systems for children at risk in orphanages, street shelters and poor homes. MAD provides a space for young volunteers to step in, lead and make a difference in their own communities. By providing on-ground exposure, actively initiating dialogue and establishing a culture of entrepreneurship, MAD transforms youth into a potent social movement to strategically impact children at risk around India. Vote for MAD here.
E-MPOWER (E-technology for Management of Projects for Persons with Communication Disorders in Rural Areas) provides speech and hearing services to individuals in rural areas.
Already helping every baby born with cleft lip in their region get surgery and speech therapy, the E-MPOWER team plans to develop an e-technology platform to make check-ups, follow-ups and interventions more efficient. To help E-MPOWER reach more people in rural India, vote here.
Rajnish Jain hopes to harness the power of pine needles and put it toward a more sustainable use: for making cooking charcoal and for generating electricity. The potential is enormous— a few kilos of pine needles can provide electricity for 50 people and cooking charcoal for 5 people. Want to stop forest fires, preserve biodiversity, and reduce carbon emissions? Vote for AVANI here.
The Head Held High Foundation is developing training programs that seek to identify and empower the most vulnerable people and communities. One such program, the Village BPO Pvt. Ltd., specializes in getting outsourced work done from rural India, providing villagers with little or no education a new, steady source of income. Vote for Head Held High here.
Mirakle Couriers is a Mumbai-based, innovative courier company that employs low-income deaf adults. They provide their clients with reliable, efficient and customizable service, all the while creating meaningful employment for deaf adults, allowing them to develop professional skills, confidence, and a sense of dignity. To help Dhruv get people to rethink their notions about “disability,” vote here.
Vijay Reddy’s for-profit business venture, Kisan Raja, supports end-to-end automated irrigation. Through Vijay’s technology, farmers can –among many other things – remotely control irrigation flow via their mobile phones, thus increasing productivity and reducing water and electricity waste. Vote for Vijay and Kisan Raja here.
Sarabjeet Singh Johar has spent 15 years researching to create a kidney test kit so simple that you can use it at home. The kit identifies a urinary protein, albumin, which is a red flag for kidney damage. This simple home-test can alert people to often dangerous conditions like diabetes, cardiovascular problems, and hypertension, before it’s too late. Sarabjeet needs a grant to bring his invention to the market – vote for URINE ALBUKIT here.
Jharkhand is the ‘Lac State of India.” Lac cultivation generates an enormous amount of income here. But lac cultivation is tricky; it requires technical training and exact timing. Manoj and his team have devised a program to develop brood lac farms that will train local tribal and non-tribal families how to grow and cultivate lac, helping them earn much needed additional income during cash-strapped seasons. To help Manoj’s program grow, vote here.
Visit Spark the Rise for more innovative projects that you can discover and support.
On 29 December, 2011, Cyclone Thane ripped into Tamil Nadu in southern India. Forty seven people were killed and the damage to infrastructure is estimated at USD 376 million.
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