STAR CHANGEMAKER 2016

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Subbu Parameswaran

Learning Curve
Social Activist
E: subbu@learning-curve.co.in
w: www.learning-curve-foundation.org

MY STORY

MY COACH'S VIEWS

"Subbu brings his professional acumen, as a practicing/successful consultant to his work, at all levels. He is so passionate about his social enterprise, he is inching to shift full-time into it.

He has been going around strengthening his presence in other cities, along with strengthening team at Hyderabad and has a clear dream, short-term goals and the passion to go after them."
- Subash CV

MY PROGRESS STORY

The purpose of Learning Curve Life Skills Foundation is to ensure that each child is properly equipped with the competencies to be emotionally balanced, self-aware, resilient against life's challenges and able to make informed choices. Essentially, our work aims to enable emotional and psycho-social health of children towards positive life outcomes.

Our “Ready for the World” program is based on a deep understanding of the developmental, psychological and behavioural needs of children. We implement several platforms, including storytelling, games, art and role play, to ensure that the right learning outcomes are delivered to our young audience. A significant proportion of this work is led by our volunteer change-makers, who deploy this program through a series of active sessions every week for one year.

While we’ve been working towards this cause since 2011, the journey since we became part of the GAP community has given us much needed acceleration. Our interactions at GAP, with the mentors and several people these past few months has certainly impacted our thinking towards this purpose. The coaching element of GAP has truly added depth to our work, and the approach has allowed us to deeply introspect, question and find solutions.

MY KEY INSIGHTS

+ 1. Start with Why, and Dig Deep

As we worked through the GAP Inner Journey and with our coach, we realized the power of bringing abundance to our work (rather than misplaced anger or sympathy). This helped us to introspect and clarify our core purpose “Every child has the right to realize one’s own potential as a human being”.

+ 2. Aim to move mountains, but start with basics

A powerful learning for us has been that while we replicate our idea, we cannot lose sight of creating a system and framework shift. One of the schools we worked with last year has taken up this program at a school level for this year, and we’re empowering their teachers to do this – a small example of a system shift.

+ 3. Your solution cannot be the only one

Learning to be humble and open towards other solutions have brought in different models of collaboration and operation. While we were guilty of being rigid about our program content and methodology, we have begun to ‘open source’ this with our partners so that we can focus on creating impact rather than just creating content.

+ 4. Chase impact, not scale

We derived tremendous clarity from our interactions at GAP, and with our mentors and coach on what is important and why. Our conscious decision to chase real impact, and believing that scale and funds will follow this is now a cornerstone of our strategy.

THE IMPACT

Last year, we impacted 330 children in low income, marginalized and vulnerable environments. We saw over 30% improvements in emotional and social skills – this was measured using an assessment tool that we developed using behavioural indicators and proficiency scales.

This year, we intend to enrol and impact 1200 children through our changemakers and partner organizations. The focus remains on enhancing the robustness of the program design and impact measurement tools, building a pool of empowered facilitators and creating measurable impact.