Our Student ARC Facilitators learn how to help their peers and younger students.

The Adolescent Resource Centre (ARC) is an Indian government-developed system for teaching adolescents and teenagers about issues that affect them in their growing years. During the past few years, we’ve had several ARC facilitators because it wasn’t a full time job, which made it not financially sustainable for them. Not having an ARC facilitator earlier this year gave us time to formulate a plan to continue this vital program for our kids. We now have two full time employees whose primary role at LDA is ARC Facilitator. They will be working with Leela Uniyal from RDI-HIHT, our partner NGO that is a training centre for ARC. Mrs. Uniyal will train them on-site at LDA, along with a few 7th and 8th class students who will learn the basics of guiding an ARC based conversation.

Ankita, age 27,  was an ARC facilitator at LDA last year. She quit because she wasn’t making enough money working part time, and she’s financially responsible for her 20 year old brother who is a college student. We found her working at a call centre in Haridwar. She was living in a small room with another young woman, but her brother had to remain in Dehradun to continue his studies. This was a stressful situation for both of them, so we were pleased to be able to offer her a full time job with benefits, just like our other employees. In addition to ARC, she will be helping out in classrooms, learning some office skills, and taking part in other activities at LDA. Ankita’s family lost all their possessions and home in the mountains during the devastating monsoon season of 2013.

Mrs. Uniyal, Ammaji, Ankita, and Varun

Varun, age 26, comes from a village near Ayodhya. He has a Master’s in Sanskrit, and, with KHEL’s support, just completed advanced yoga training in Rishikesh. He is new to ARC and will depend on Mrs. Uniyal and Ankita to bring him up to speed on how the program works. In addition to ARC, Varun will be teaching yoga classes and assisting our Sanskrit teacher, Shastriji, in the classroom. There are very few job prospects in Varun’s village, forcing him to leave to find work.

Neither Ankita nor Varun have teaching degrees. This means they can’t teach academic subjects on their own, but there’s still a lot for them to do – ARC, yoga, art, and after school tuition, all extracurricular activities designed to enrich our kids’ lives. KHEL doesn’t hire people just because of what they can do for our kids. We also hire them to give them training and skills which they can take with them when they move on to bigger and better things.

Welcome back, Ankita! Welcome to KHEL, Varun! We’re really happy you’re working with us to improve our kids’ lives, and your own.

Good thing this isn’t a test!