Buddy4Study Wins CSR Impact Award
Buddy4Study – During the second wave of the COVID pandemic, which occurred in April 2021, India lost a large number of middle-aged people. According to official figures, over 4 lakh people died and millions of other families lost their livelihoods as a result of COVID restrictions and a slowing economy.
This resulted in an unprecedented crisis of COVID orphans in India. Thousands of students who had either lost their parents or had lost their jobs were on the verge of dropping out of formal education due to financial difficulties.
Buddy4Study, India’s largest scholarship platform that connects scholarship and education loan providers, has launched a special scholarship program to assist these students financially. It raised Covid Crisis Scholarship funds from donors, particularly CSR bodies from various corporations, in order to assist and provide hope to these distressed students so that they could continue their education.
More than 12000 students received timely financial support for their education through the special scholarship program for COVID-affected students. Buddy4Study received an award in the Education category at the 8th CSR Impact Awards, India CSR Summit, for its impactful work. CSRBOX and the Dalmia Bharat Foundation are hosting Asia’s largest CSR Forum.
Buddy4Study initially provided a platform for affected students to apply for financial aid.
According to the organization, “as we began to receive valid applications, we approached a number of corporate partners to assist such students through their CSR funds.”
Buddy4Study designed and launched many COVID Crisis Support programme pages on their platform as per the specific program requirements and objectives of the funding organizations/CSR partners as more corporates joined forces.
Following that, outreach and mobilization were carried out via online and offline media channels. Candidates were chosen based on their need and the severity of their crisis. All due diligence was done for document checking and application verification. Following that, students were contacted via phone to create a final list of candidates (as per the fund availability).
Scholarships were awarded to the students, with funds transferred directly into their bank accounts. The program expanded quickly as a result of the digital intervention, with a record number of applications for various COVID Crisis Support Scholarship programs.
Policy experts were consulted before designing the project, and the team assessed the need for such projects. To assess and analyze the problems, government data on COVID deaths were gathered. A few school officials were consulted in order to better understand the impact of the COVID-led crisis on their students.
“We engaged with our existing CSR partners to understand their participation in such a project,” the organization says. Furthermore, we reached out to over 5,000 schools across India to spread information about the scholarship program, which was designed to help students affected by the crisis.”
Buddy4Study developed technology to launch scholarship programs within 48 hours of funding partners’ approval. The team collaborated with over 350 media outlets, including print, radio, online platforms, and 100+ YouTube influencers, to spread the word about the scholarships.
More than 5 lakh applications were received by the organization, including nearly 2 lakh applications for their global application titled COVID Crisis Support (Jyoti Prakash) Scholarship programme.
“We were also able to disburse close to Rs 49 Cr of scholarship amount under different scholarships available,” the organization says. Scholarships have been awarded to over 12000 students, with many more set to be awarded in the near future.