PRANAV is a charity foundation that focuses on supporting underprivileged children in the developing countries by offering them financial support for access into education and providing sports equipment with the aim of giving, as many children as possible, the opportunity to play sports with the right protective gear.
Education being the core rights for children, it is very unfortunate that there are still millions of children around the world who are denied education, or lack the facilities for education. We at Charity PRANAV aim to help as many children as possible to gain access into education by means of offering a three-year academic scholarship.
We have also identified that physical activities are equally essential in a child’s development, and in particular sport is an essential part of life. By providing sports equipment, we aim to give underprivileged children the opportunity to play sports; and having the correct protective gear will improve their confidence.
Charity PRANAV was founded in March 2012 by Dipan Suwarneraj, MD and CEO at Barefoot Traveller and Lions Sports Travel. He was accompanying a UK county cricket team touring in North Central part of Sri Lanka, when he met a young player aged 14 and his mother who had travelled for hours to play a match against the UK team. This was a fascinating story of a single mother who has raised three kids by herself and her determination to do everything possible for her son to become a good cricket player in a country where cricket is worshiped as a religion and the competition is fearsome.
Also on the same trip, he had spoken to many other talented young players and to their parents in the local villages and most of them shared a common concern over lack of sports equipment available amongst players. The cost of buying the equipment remains a dream for many families as the cricket kit remains expensive and affordable by only a small percentage of elite families. Since the love for this game is greater than any obstacles, the kids tend to share the kit amongst themselves between a team or two at local clubs or schools.
These sentiments made him found Charity PRANAV to help as many children as possible to use the correct sports gear so that they can play the sport that they love the most.
It started off with just himself as the volunteer and helping only a handful of children, and now there are now over 3,000 boys and girls benefiting from this charity with 12 volunteers. The numbers are expected to double over the next two years.
The single mother’s dream did not go discarded, as over the last four years, her son passed his GCSEs examination and received a scholarship from PRANAV to join a leading state school in Kandy (being the second largest city in Sri Lanka). He represented his school for U16 Sri Lanka, and U19 district (county) cricket teams and is now playing cricket for a leading club in Colombo at the age of 19 years (age as of Dec 2016). He remains a highly talented young player in Sri Lanka with the hope of playing for his country over the coming years.
There are so many other fascinating stories that has happened over the last four years and we are aiming to share them with you as case studies over the next few months.
Charity PRANAV is a non-profitable organisation, whereby there are strictly no money transactions or any sales involved in any products. The officials of the charity are 100% volunteers.
At present, Charity PRANAV is focusing on the underprivileged children in Sri Lanka and on completion of Goal 1* of the project, we aim to extend our programme to other countries such as India, Bangladesh, and Nepal.
*- Goal 1: Reaching out to 5,000 children
Charity PRANAV along with these 3,000 children in Sri Lanka are deeply grateful to the individuals, schools, cricket counties and clubs that help to make our work possible to change the life of many less privileged children.
Below are our partners:
We understand from our volunteers in Sri Lanka that the education system requires a child to pass a minimum of four subjects in GCSE examinations in order to continue their higher education or to apply for any further job opportunities. As such the decision was made to provide tutoring and additional support in learning the national curriculum for children from 13 years of age for three years until they sit for the examinations at the age of 16 years. We believe that providing high standard tutoring will help them to either get scholarship to pursue for their higher education or to enter an apprenticeship to follow their dream jobs.
Our volunteers in Sri Lanka are very careful in hand picking and selecting children for this programme with the main intention that this should go to to only the deserving families from the underprivileged areas who have shown keen interest in studies and made significant improvements in achieving their personal goals and grades. At the same time we also work in collaboration with local schools in deprived areas where parents can approach PRANAV via the school management who also select children suitable for this academic scholarship program.
This is the busiest and yet the most fun part of PRANAV that we thoroughly enjoy amongst ourselves, as volunteers! We are very grateful and honored for all the sports gear and equipment that have been kindly donated to us over the past four years and were distributed to the carefully selected local players, schools, clubs and county teams. Cricket is by far the most loved and most played sport in the country, mainly enjoyed by boys, and now girls are beginning to show interest more recently. But this admired sport is being compromised due to the cost of cricket gear; therefore these donations bring a positive light into their lives by making them appreciate every single kit that they receive. All shoes, bats, balls, gloves and all other kit that are being donated will be given to the children by the children from the UK, during their travel at an event organized mainly for Charity Pranav at the end of the tour. The smile and gratitude they exhibit on their faces are boundless and interminable.
A child can be sponsored for a period of 3 years predominantly to support teaching/tutoring and with buying education related materials and books in preparation for their GCSEs. This will be a minimum of £10 to a maximum of £20.00 monthly donation, which will be paid directly to the child that you sponsor. Their reports and progress will be observed and monitored by the teachers, school management and by us so that we all know that the funds are going to the right cause. For more information, please contact our team.
Future plans: Further develop the necessity and facilities in underdeveloped schools such as building classrooms, libraries, sports facilities, etc
It’s a child’s job to be curious, explore and discover. It’s our job to keep children as safe as possible while they’re at it so they can grow up to do all the great things children are meant to do.
And we need your help.
We know how frantic and busy our lives are with many demands on our time, so we’ll make it easy for you. All you need to do is to spare a few minutes in the cupboards or your garage to pick up the unused sports related items that you no longer need and hand them to your coaches. We will collect them from the coaches and pass them over to deserving children. There is always something you can do to make a big impact on a child – whether it’s your child or a child around the world who will benefit from us.
And we can’t think of a better way to spend a minute.