Dr. Uma Venkatachalam
Dr. V. Uma is an educationist, with vision to create a Multiversity for poor to provide free education. Dr Uma has been serving the poor and needy since 1987, right from the age of 12. She founded Suyam Charitable Trust in 1999, which is focused on improving the lives of children in poor communities through education.
In the last two decades, through the continuous focus, selfless service and with the support of good Samaritans, Uma has been able to establish two schools viz., Siragu Montessori and Bharatha Matha School. Suyam’s flagship school, SIRAGU Montessori near Avadi, Chennai provides free education to 450 children of which 120 children are residential and focus is on overall development. So far 1500 children benefited in the project from 2003. Bharatha Matha School caters to another 125 students. Apart from education of the deprived children, her focus is on community development, especially the of the Nomadic Tribes. She does so by supporting their families in many ways like their health-related Activities, lobbying for their basic rights and identity, forming Self Help Group for women, procurement of auto rickshaws for Men, Balwadi for Toddlers, etc. With this approach, she has been able to transform 250 families and has given them an earned means of livelihood to overcome begging.
Being an expert in wasteland development, Dr Uma has also reclaimed 50 acres of wasteland into cultivable land.
She has also won a number of awards for her work over the years.
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