We have established 186 balwadis (day-care centres) in all five districts over the past 25 years. Most of these balwadis are now supported by the government and we work with them to ensure they keep running. As well as preparing children for future learning, the balwadis provide health and nutritional checks to all children.
In rural villages most children left primary school studies because they needed to work to support their families. Every year we go out and encourage enrolment into primary education. Increasing numbers of children in rural villages are being offered a chance to improve their future prospects.
A high number of rural children now go on to attend one of two secondary schools operated by us. When we began working in education in 1986 only approximately 15% of children would go on to secondary education. Our target is to get 85% attending over the next five years. A higher secondary and a matriculation school called St Xavier Matriculation Hr. Sec School and Good Shepard Model School operate in Tirunelveli and Tuticorin respectively.
We have established 11 colleges and technical institutions to provide skilled labour for the region and beyond. Part of the fees charged to send students to higher education institutes go towards funding the early stage education in the rural villages. That way the next generation will be given the same opportunities for development as their parents.