Head Held High Foundation’s Make India Capable program is an endeavor to educate and empower impoverished and vulnerable youth between the ages of 18 to 30 — enabling them to become socially conscious and responsible members of society working towards a stable future.
It catalyzes transformation in them by drawing on latent capacities of self-worth, self-esteem, self-confidence, pride, awareness, and gratitude and supports them in taking charge of their lives and that of those around them. Its focus is to train these youth to become life and work-capable.
‘Make India Capable’ believes that individuals caught in the complex web of poverty and illiteracy tend to replicate the same patterns of living- generation after generation – and thus need a scalable means to overcome barriers and succeed in quashing the cycle of poverty for good.
The National Curriculum Framework says that every curriculum has “to equip the learners to lead a life – a kind of life that is satisfying to the individual in accordance with the cherished values and ideals of the society. [It should] enable them to bring out the latent potentialities and inherent qualities and develop an ‘integrated personality’ for the well-being of the individual and the society at large” (National Curriculum Framework 2005).
Echoing NCF, HHH’s MIC is driven to develop the intrinsic capability of the individual. The program works towards developing an open/growth mindset, making its trainees more purposeful as a result.
As Head Held High’s flagship program, ‘Make India Capable’ is a blend of sustainable partnerships, scalable delivery models, exemplary trainer empowerment, robust curriculum and a defined evaluation matrix aligned with the goals and vision of the organization.
Everyone has inherent strengths and abilities. Many, especially the ones under poverty, do not realize this and are unable to access and leverage their competencies. Our aim is to support them in the process of recognizing and realizing their potential. Over time, this gives them confidence and knowledge to transform and lead their lives with dignity.
The three principles binding the MIC curriculum are Relevance, Transformation and Learning through Contexts. These are interwoven seamlessly into the content and methodology.
Relevance is that which is “practical and socially applicable”. The curriculum enables this through learning experiences that are directly applicable to specific problems, skills, and situations.
Applicable topics are consciously incorporated into the curriculum, so that beneficiaries gain skills and knowledge that are immediately relevant to them.
A context is the background in which a training session or a set of sessions are conducted. Our curriculum achieves contextual learning through engaging content. The learner is exposed to simple challenges that are realistic. The curriculum provides them space to apply their knowledge in order to address the challenge, in the process driving greater understanding and engagement on the part of the learner.
The curriculum is presented through a series of experiences – rather than as a monotonous knowledge transfer – and this further adds to its impact. Using experiences as a learning tool also aids increased retention.
Reflecting on activities is more important than the activity itself, as it gives birth to deeper discovery or understanding of topics covered in the classroom. Thus, the curriculum incorporates reflective questions to further self-learning and understanding.
Transformation is anything that advances an individual from what they were yesterday to what they are today. The curriculum adopts a transformative approach in its methodology by providing spaces for reflection and honest dialogue.
This transformation happens in the mind of an individual through a series of steps, wherein the trainees move from a mind-set of “I am not good enough” to “I am already doing it”. This empowering tool is the basis for any sort of growth, especially in this context.
The learner-centric approach encourages the participants to actively contribute towards their learning and growth.
The curriculum incorporates the following methods:
The curriculum design works under the theory that the learning process is not linear. Therefore, keeping in mind the various needs of the learners, the curriculum caters to six kinds of intelligence processes:
Word games, crosswords, reading comprehension, etc.
Reasoning, arguments, puzzles, etc.
Activities, games, etc.
Use of graphics, videos, presentations, diagrams, etc.
Peer activities, group discussions, etc.
Yoga, guest lectures, motivational speeches, etc.
Tattva’ and ‘Mimamsa’ are two Sanskrit words that mean ‘truth or reality’ and ‘reflection or critical investigation’ respectively. In modern understanding it is called ontology, the nature of being. This leads to a growing mind-set that believes self-improvement is possible and achievable.
The training concept incorporates this element that induces the trainee to transform. This transformation happens in the mindset of an individual through a series of steps, wherein the trainees move from a mind-set of “I am not good enough” to “I am already doing it”. This is an empowering tool that is basis for any sort of growth, especially in this context.
The curriculum is designed with the intention to build confidence by gradually increasing the difficulty levels. When the individuals efficiently graduate from a lower degree of difficulty to higher level difficulty their confidence is boosted. They become ready to face greater challenges when the situation arises.
Practice makes perfect; this basic understanding in inculcated through the curriculum. Conscious space and time for practicing the learnt lesson are provided and the importance of being disciplined in following them rigorously is stressed on so that an individual can apply this trait in future learning spaces, both in life and work.
For adults to learn afresh is a daunting task and they tend to give in to fear and give up. The aspect of perseverance is inculcated to motivate the candidates to try and keep trying in the objectives and goals set for them with an intention that they take this principle with them for life
Competitiveness is a needed trait to survive in a competitive world. The curriculum encourages healthy competition that instils every individual to keep getting better.
The curriculum is designed for underprivileged individuals who grossly lack an optimistic outlook towards life. The curriculum aspires to build in the individual a realistic hope and the art of looking at things in a brighter perspective.
A healthy dose of curiosity is essential for learning. The curriculum is built to tease an individual’s curiosity and make them want to learn more. Being curious about everything creates a thirst for knowledge.
The curriculum is designed to infuse energy and enthusiasm in an individual. Thus, a monotonous language activity and teaching mode is avoided to keep the enthusiasm and energy levels high throughout the curriculum. Moreover, building enthusiasm keeps the individual engaged and keen to learn newer concepts and models.
The curriculum encourages the individuals to be creative. The ultimate end of the curriculum is to help the individual think, analyse and create on their own. The curriculum realizes that being creative is a must for any individual to keep excelling in this rapidly evolving world.
The entire process is streamlined to achieve maximum efficacy, following a specially designed delivery schematic.
The efficacy of the curriculum is realized in its delivery. Hence quality control in the delivery mechanism is very important. The Make India Capable program identifies this critical aspect and trains the trainer to effectively deliver the curriculum.
A continuous evaluation of the curriculum, the trainers and the trainees establishes consistency and is an essential factor in determining program efficacy.
In summary, the Head Held High Foundation’s ‘Make India Capable’ program strives to tackle the problem of poverty through a thoughtfully designed program that addresses gaps in learning, knowledge and exposure for youth who have not had a chance to complete their schooling.