Edulever Consulting is a resource and consulting organization for CSR and social development sectors, focusing on education and skill development founded in 2009.
Edulever provides consultancy services to organizations in the development sector, specifically in the education sector. More than 75 civil society organizations (CSOs) and 25 organizations have been offered services in improving their skills development programs. Edulever’s support program for vocational training seeks to improve the quality of vocational training through developing innovative curricula, which are used by corporations and CSOs. Edulever has developed curricula for regular classroom teaching, that employs visual media and includes content that is developed in English, Hindi and Urdu.
Edulever has developed curricula that incorporates the development of various soft skills such as Workplace English, Work Readiness & Basic IT. Edulever has also worked to develop curricula on technical skills such Retail (Customer Relationship & Sales), Hospitality, Office Administration, etc. To ensure the effective delivery of its curricula through various vocational training programs, Edulever organizes teacher training programs.
During these trainings, the trainees receive training on classroom management, lesson planning, principles of adult learning, types of learners, obtaining feedback from the learners, etc. Over a thousand teachers have been trained through these training programs so far. Edulever delivers teachers’ training at venues provided by clients anywhere in India.
In order to facilitate the effective implementation of the vocational training programs, Edulever has developed processes for the mobilization and selection of students, domain segregation, assessment of trainers and learners, placements and post-placement follow-ups.
Existing clients of Edulever that have already implemented its curricula include among others: Tech Mahindra Foundation’s SMART Program, American India Foundation’s MAST Program, ITC, YES Program of Youth Reach, Quest Alliance, and Pratham. Edulever has also developed modules on soft skills training for the hearing impaired. Through its curricula, a couple of lacs of learners have been reached so far.
“As a senior development professional, I have deep understanding of and significant experience in the Education and Skill Development sectors. Part of my journey has been entrepreneurial, which has helped me develop a comprehensive perspective on everything that leads to success in project implementation.
In my current position as the Chief Operating Officer at Tech Mahindra Foundation, I lead a team of eight people responsible for the implementation of over 150 projects in Education and Skill Development across 11 cities. My association with the Foundation is since 2012, when Edulever – the resource and consulting outfit I founded in 2009 – signed up as the Technical Support Partner for Tech Mahindra’s work in Skill Development. In this capacity, I conceived and helped set up the SMART (Skills-for-Market Training) Program, which is one of the largest CSR-led urban Skill Development programmes in India today.
I’m also the co-founder of Agrasar (www.agrasar.org), a developmental organization working for Skills, Social Security, and Education in Gurgaon. An early-childhood and primary education program that I’ve started and am closely associated with is Sahpathi (www.sahpathi.in) – an experiment in improving the quality in low cost private schools in urban India.
The initial years in the sector were spent in Pratham, where I was heading the interventions in Delhi and later in North India. I was also part of the core them that worked on the roll out of ASER (Annual Status of Education Report) in 2005.
An abiding passion to innovate and deliver high quality initiatives at scale continues to be the driving force for me, as I seek to expand my horizons in this space”, says Chetan Kapoor
He further adds, “Unlike conventional (or commercial) entrepreneurship, where the focus is on maximizing returns for the shareholders irrespective of whether the enterprise has a social benefit, the focus of a social entrepreneur is on maximizing returns for the society. A social enterprise, structured as a non-profit or a for-profit, is generally philanthropic in nature, but is not dependent on charity for its sustenance. In the Indian context, perhaps the best example of a social enterprise is Amul, which was founded in 1946 as a response to the exploitation of milkmen at the hands of middlemen and large dairies. Dr.Kurien was given the task of managing the cooperative in 1950, and as a sterling social entrepreneur, was instrumental in establishing Amul as a household brand and the largest milk producer in the world.
In the past few years, as commercial start-ups have garnered increasing attention and have found an easier ecosystem to operate in, social start-ups too have seen a fair share of growth. More and more organizations that have ‘making the world a better place’ as their key objective have sprung up, working in areas such as health, environment, energy conservation, and education. Graduates from top B-schools and IITs are being drawn towards social enterprise. Indeed, there is scarcely a joy more thrilling than finding a solution to a problem that can help thousands – or even millions – of people. However, those who choose to tread this path must ensure that they have the mental strength to go through a precarious trajectory, and a burning conviction that their solution is indeed the one that the world has been waiting for.”
From Sunny Narang’s Facebook posts :
26 January, 2016
#Agrasar #Sahpathi #RepublicDay2016
In a city which is all private, the housing complexes, the malls, the Cyberurbia , the software/start-up/BPO humongous steel and glass ‘gagan-chumbi’, sky-kissing buildings, there exists a hybrid private system for those who service this Great Global Organised System.
That private system is on farmers lands. It has few buildings few storeys high. Mostly it has very small shanty like housing. All immigrants, from who knows where.
Large ‘informal’ population clustered together in hundreds of thousands in completely new cities like Gurgaon, in such spaces with no structured urban services like water or sanitation. All is private.
Sahpathi is a small experiment there, in support education started by Chetan Kapoor. Of kids about 5-12 years old who cannot get admission in any school , and even if they do, the teachers and education is not worth it, and also many immigrants speak Bengali, and would like Bengali speaking instructors for their kids.
In Sahpathi they follow a tri-lingual formulae. English, Hindi and Bengali, besides singing, dancing, art , basic maths and science .
They have now about 100 plus kids and 6 instructors which they train from the community .
Chetan Kapoor came to meet me few years ago with Manish Sinha just for a chat and coffee in a cafe , soon became a friend and I invested in his small development consultancy Edulever so he could find better people .
To do what ?
Just as the corporations have their huge ecology of consultants and trainers , going upto the Boston Consulting Group types who consult Governments too , there needs to be a support system for so many small institutions in education and training across our country .
The small institutions can be small trusts, societies, enterprises but they have little idea on what kind of curriculum will work for what kind of children from backgrounds of urban slums, villages, industrial areas, small towns. The soft-skills needed for jobs, the training of the teachers and how to run organisations sustainably and with quality delivery.
We all know how meaningless is the Indian educational system at almost all levels. Especially at government school levels. With almost no planning about children who drop out of school early. How to plan a curriculum that will be of use to children at each stage, in their villages or towns, or at their social and class level.
There is really no connect to the vocations children do or could do. And looking at how girls drop-out faster what knowledge and skills should be given to them in early stage.
We need a complete new understanding based on present realities, on how to train our ‘demographic dividend’ of almost 400 million children.
More boys than girls are dropping out of the schools in India. As against 39% boys who dropped out before completing elementary education in 2013-14, only 33% girls did so, says the latest statistics of the Ministry of Human Resources and Development (MHRD).
In 2012-13, nearly 41% female students had dropped out of the schools without completing elementary education, as against 40.3% male students. The gender gap in dropout within a year appears to be more profound in the upper primary classes (5-8).
Poverty, poor academic performance, substandard teaching, migration and need for employment to support the family are major factors behind the higher dropout rate of the boys, say experts.
Overall, nearly 20% children in India didn’t complete primary education in 2013-14. Nearly 36% children didn’t complete elementary education.
This is despite the fact the Right to Education (RTE) Act is in place since 2010, which mandates free and compulsory education to every child in the country up to class 8.
However, it appears that the Act has led to higher enrolment but unable to ensure quality education and retention.
Demographic dynamics reshaping emerging Asia
KEN KOYANAGI, Editor-at-large, Nikkei Asian ReviewDecember 24, 2015
Chetan Kapoor, CEO of Edulever, a nonprofit educational project consultant, said, “The intent is certainly there in the government, but there are huge gaps” between government knowledge and reality. He pointed out that there is a huge shortage of decent primary-level teachers, after a rapid increase in the number of schools and classrooms around the country.
6th August, 2015
Chetan Kapoor has worked in education for years. A Punjabi from Patna, he spent his time looking after his Dad’s sanitary supplies business in Patna , working in a technology start-up , then working for small and big NGO’s in support education.
He realised that most Government schools do not work. Even when you place an assistant to hold remedial classes, the Principal will likely turn that person into a secretary !
He then starts his consultancy for training kids for soft skills Edulever, working over years with foundations interested in skilling young people.
He lives and works out of Gurgaon. Around him he sees what is a classic case of urban villages , like in Delhi , where almost all immigrant families stay . These are the families providing the Ayahs, Drivers, Peons, Safai-wallahs, Garbage-collectors, the low-end services that run a city.
But many of these immigrants may have no papers, they may be from Bangladesh, but they have kids. Even if they have papers they cannot worry about their education.
We all now believe that the default path is Big Urbanisation and Floating Populations. Natural corollary is Slums, large numbers of children growing up on the margins, who may or may not become the new underground.
Chetan has thought of an intervention – Sahpathi
Learning in a space where no papers are asked for, where each child is paid attention to. Read on.
It costs about Rs.9,000/- a year to create this space for one kid. His target is One Village in Gurgaon , where he has found 100 kids who need such support.
27th January, 2015
I wrote about the adman Manish Sinha, who was founder of the home-stay with the Grannies few days ago. He has a friend from their home-town Patna, Chetan Kapoor. Now Manish wanted me to meet Chetan aise hai. Manish also I meet via FB. Chetan runs this Educational Consultancy Edulever in Gurgaon.
We meet randomly for coffee. And then I invest personally in Edulever, finding Chetan to be one of the most sensible heart-in-right-place professional I have met, who has worked in his dad’s sanitary business in Patna, then in Pratham for education of disadvantaged, then a start-up which did’nt go anywhere due to the crisis in 2008. Then Edulever, to support Corporates to do their CSR.
Chetan has worked in villages and slums, urban soft-skill training and remote locations for primary education. He has many ideas on how to use technology as an enabling tool for teaching and as well as counselling for careers.
Conversations with him have been enlightening on why most skilling programmes do not work, unless a proper aspirational and social study has been done of the backgrounds of the young ones.
Chetan also co-founded Agrasar, a non-profit. Agrasar works on themes of Education, Employability and Social Security. They work in Gurgaon, Haridwar and Saharanpur.
This for me is the future of social entrepreneurship. A for-profit and a not-for-profit sharing staff and skills . It teaches one to think about financial sustainability and simultaneously attract talent with the excitement of working with big corporations as well as innovate for communities that have little access to education or training, opportunity or good trainers.
Edulever meanwhile is doing great and growing working collaboratively with our other branding, digital and communication partners as well as Indian School of Innovation in Sustainability.
With a whole bouquet of young and talented people (and young in spirit) we can all get cutting-edge support and partnerships in house, from PR to animation to video-content and together all of them can provide a 360 degree CSR, branding, digital and content support to any other business .
And in a way all this is also connected with sports.
So you see I believe in the fact that Sustainability, Start-Ups, Sports , Skilling , Social Innovation are all parts of the same Youth Ecology for Creativity and Entrepreneurship that we need in plenty !
Thanks Sauman for joining in at the launch of Sahpathi, for immigrant children in Gurgaon. You guys are the ‘Ghar Wapsi’ we need.
12th September, 2014
This is what happens when you have an incubator with nerd-media types, brand-PR types and then CSR types mixing together ! These all are passionate young people about what they do, and I am lovin’ how they are a jammin’ !
Chetan founder of Edulever is a CSR consultancy that has done extensive work in the education and employability space. He meets Arjun of BlueAnt Digital Intelligence who has done something cool for Young Monk, a cutting edge sports and live entertainment PR/branding agency, on Football branding. Chetan wants CSR which is now a law, but almost no one is moving as they don’t really get it, to be explained in a cool way.
So Arjun and team had to come up with a metaphor, an idiom, that would be able to show their experience, the sheer distance they have covered with their work and tie it down with the education theme. It took some thinking, but in the end Rashmi, their graphic numero-uno ,came up with the concept of a bus, a school bus: something that evoked journey, reach and education, all the same time. And they created an animated video , PPT’s are now passe’ !
Corporate Animated Presentations
18th April, 2014
There are about 16,000 companies in India who will have to spend upwards of 20,000 crore rupees annually on CSR. Just ONGC alone will need to donate hundreds of crores under the new CSR law of 2% of profits .
Earlier there was the State and Foundations/Multi-Lateral Aid agencies like EU/UN who did the major contributions. This again would be like organised sector as the unorganised philanthropy in India with its Gurudwaras, Temple Trusts, Dargah’s and multiple caste support groups would be much bigger.
Philanthropy or giving is also many times hidden volunteerism, seva-bhav , just like Hanuman or Harishchandra. And as so-called NGO’s value the volunteerism in dollars to impress their funders about the efficacy of the donor funds then the Religious and Caste bodies would have billions of dollars of unpaid work !
I was always on the lookout of a dynamic and professional organisation in the CSR consultancy sector that did not have the blinkers of inane ideological untouchability – purist Left, Gandhian or Environmental or any other ‘Purity Packaging’, but start from where the donor wants and match-make her needs with the many agencies and movements doing great work on the ground. For my generation non-profits international money was untainted as they could not see their source trails, but Indian money was dirty. Forgetting that it was mostly Church-Led and Empire-based economies they were dealing with.
Now we need professionals who will connect and build thousands of new bridges between Indian needs and Indian donors . On making projects that add value to everyone involved , that bring sensible giving and utilisation practices .
I found Chetan Kapoor, a man of many talents who had worked for years in Education , but belonged to a trading family from Patna, who was building his own IP in vocational training and English education. In gathering intelligence, social, cultural before beginning projects, so the risk of failure is much lower as we urban do-gooders believe that we ‘know’ what the target-audience should want and what they need to learn rather than start from what their needs or aspirations are. We are carrying the same ‘white-man’s burden’ complex .
I can now see many people building the hybrid partnerships, the Public-Private-Community via any vehicle NGO, Cooperatives, Section 25 companies, For profit social-enterprises. Like everything there is no Good and Bad, there is a range of possibilities. Am very happy to be mentoring, raising funding for partners like Edulever .
4th January, 2014
A brick road runs through the center of the village. It had rained heavily the previous evening; we are greeted with the warm smell of fresh earth and cowdung. Chaitasangma is one of numerous villages that dot the landscape of north Bihar, situated around 100 kms to the north of the capital city of Patna. I am there as part of a recce for a forthcoming project for Edulever.
Spent last evening with two bright minds from Bihar. Manish Sinha who went from a top-level advertising career into home-stays and story-telling Cinnamon Stays , who got along Chetan Kapoor , a Punjabi from Patna ! Chetan is Director and Co-Founder of Edulever, a dedicated resource and consulting organization in the education and development sector.
Chetan worked in the corporate sector like Manish and then shifted to tech-start-up in 2000-01 , then had to go back to Patna to support his family in their building materials business , before he decided to spend his life in the education and vocational training sector . He was Director of Programs with Pratham, after Pratham, he joined the American India Foundation (AIF) where he worked as the Regional Head of the Digital Equalizer Program, helping merge the world of technology with education.
We had great conversations on the experiments with migrant labour support systems at source and at the new habitat , on how most educational and training state programs leave much to be desired . We now have a whole well exposed professional tribe of young people who have seen the issues both with the NGO, Private and State and are now working to build new pipelines and platforms to reboot everything .
These are exciting times. New possibilities, new enterprises are emerging. Meanwhile the story-teller Manish was trying to see, how all these dry and abstract concepts can be visualised and story-boarded ! You see he runs a story-making company called Tikdam!
This is Edulever’s unofficial blog where Chetan shares his experiences in the experiments they are part of –
“A few more questions – on science as well as English – are received with the same fervor: the answers are quick to come in most cases. The few minutes of my interaction with the group are enough to ascertain that there are a number of bright sparks in this class. I end the session by asking them as to what they wish to be when they grow up, and again the enthusiastic answers – teacher, doctor, engineer. A shy little girl sitting in front of me wants to be a doctor, and when I ask her if she will be willing to go to a city such as Patna to study to become a doctor, she takes her time to respond, “अगर डॉक्टर बनना है तो जाना ही पड़ेगा!” (If I have to become a doctor, I will have to go.) Will her parents allow her to go? This time she is not so sure.“