Goals; meaning to our lives

“A goal is not always meant to be reached; it often serves simply as something to aim at.”

These words said by Bruce Lee really make us ponder what true success is. True success as defined by him is to chase our dreams and work towards meaningful goals.

For Bipin Dhane an IIT graduate from Satara, Maharastra success panned beyond numbers and wealth. Bipin even while having a seemingly clear path laid ahead of him never gave up on his goals and dreams. After graduating from IIT Kharagpur in Naval Architecture, part of the 2013 batch he was placed in Singapore-based MNC.

Even wealth and stability could not stop Bipin as he took the decision to pursue his true passions. He gave up everything in 2015 and went on to do something even few people would think of at a position he was in.

Bipin Dhane
Bipin Dhane

“I never wanted the corporate life. There was no fulfillment in working there. For nearly a year and a half, I had thought about quitting. One day on social media, I connected with a friend of mine who was working in the remote river island of Majuli on the Brahmaputra River in Assam as a teacher for underprivileged children. I aspired to work in the education sector, and she told me there were opportunities to teach there. I finally mustered the courage to quit in October 2015 and made my way to Majuli,”

Humble Beginnings

The Hummingbird School, a co-educational institution, emits an aura of knowledge and growth. Benefitting the children of the indigenous Mising tribal community in Kulamu village, Majuli. The story of this school is as vibrant and breathtaking as the education it provides.

It was farthest from his intentions to set up a school when Bipin arrived in Majauli. This all changed around mid-2016 when he got to know all the problems of the village. The residents met him and narrated all the problems like – lack of transport, medical and education facilities. The people felt like it was about time that something should be done about this and reached out for his support. He couldn’t refuse them but instead accepted the task and immediately started working on it.

Hummingbird school
Setting up the school

A collective effort

Bipin Dhane now completely fixated on the task on hand did not leave one stone unturned. He reached out to friends, family and even the residents of that area. Three families went as far as to donate their land. The villagers volunteered actively and donated natural materials like wood and bamboo. By early 2017 their efforts paid off and Hummingbird school was established. Now the school hosts up to 240 students across 11 villages and is a centerpiece of the community.

Hummingbird School by Bipin Dhane
Hummingbird School

The school currently employees 20 teachers and 10 staff members. The school sustains itself with self-reliance. They grow their own food and are assisted by locals and parents of the students in maintenance. The cost of educating one child comes up to Rs 1200. Of the 240 children, the families of 100 pay a subsidized amount of Rs 250 per month. Meanwhile, all the hostel services provided to the 70 students are completely free. The village council decides furthermore which students can avail complete scholarships under special conditions. While the fees are almost negligible there is no cut back on the education levels. The school has even employed a football coach and encourages all activities for growth.

Ayang foundation and mission

Around 2017 while working with his students decided to extend his reach and efforts. Bipin Dhane along with his 6 other team members and colleagues thus laid the foundation for the ‘Ayang trust’.

In the native Mising language, Ayang means love and compassion. Just like the name Ayang, the foundation stands on core values of trust, affection and cooperation. Teaching self-reliance to the students and further empowering them for a better life. They are planning to further take in 5 more government schools under them. After increasing the standards till 12th grade they will affiliate themselves to a board as well.

Ayang foundation is doing a lot for the community. On their steadfast mission to empower the community they always continue to look for volunteers and help.

Read about more such change-makers:

Himani Bundela; Impaired by sight empowered by vision

‘Schoolasium’: a mind gym by Mohammad Sajid Hussain

Girish Bharadwaj; The bridgeman of India

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