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Smita on a new mission

Pop singer Smita and ALAI member Kiran participating in the ‘Run for Rural Education’ in Vijayawada on Tuesday.— PHOTO: V. RAJU
Pop singer Smita and ALAI member Kiran participating in the ‘Run for Rural Education’ in Vijayawada on Tuesday.— PHOTO: V. RAJU

‘Run for Rural Education’ flagged off

The city-born pop singer Smita has embarked on a new mission. ‘Run for Rural Education (RRE)’, as she calls it, is being organised under the aegis of Aspire Learn Achieve Inspire (ALAI), in collaboration with IshaVidya, the educational initiative of Isha Foundation.
Kiran, a member of ALAI and who works with Philips Lighting, is passionate about the cause and thus has offered to team up with the singer. He will reach Visakhapatnam on October 18 covering a distance of 350 km by foot on National Highway-16, passing through Hanuman Junction, Rajahmundry, Yalamanchili, Tuni, and Anakapalle.
Vijayawada MP Kesineni Srinivas Rao flagged off the run from The Food Lounge (TFL) at Mogulrajpuram in the city on Tuesday morning. “Education is the most important tool which leads one from ignorance into the light of knowledge and wisdom. The idea is to bring like-minded people on to a common platform and launch concerted effort towards achieving positive result,” said the singer-cum-entrepreneur.
Zeroing on ‘Vijaya Dasami’ day to start the ‘auspicious’ run, Kiran began his Vijayawada-to-Visakhapatnam run on foot. A few other enthusiasts from Telugu film industry like Nikhil, Sarvanand and others started parallel runs from different locations. Smita ran with Kiran on the first day and will join on again on the last day. Besides volunteers and friends, students of Sri Chaitanya Educational Institutions joined the run at various points.
TFL, the food lounge, is the official nutrition and logistic partner for the event.
“Children in rural areas have access only to government-run schools where standards leave a lot to be desired. ALAI, along with IshaVidya, aims at reducing the student-teacher ratio by hiring more number of teachers, to integrate slow learners into the mainstream learning system by hiring teachers for special instruction, implementation of English language programme for schools, encouraging activities like yoga, arts and crafts and healthcare.
Training teachers in child-friendly teaching methods and use of classroom educational aids and digital content are other highlight areas. She said besides spreading awareness on RRE, funds would also be raised through a crowd-funding portalwww.ketto.org.