Help Prakash Rao Provide Education And Nutrition For Slum Children | Milaap
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Help Prakash Rao Provide Education And Nutrition For Slum Children

Prakash Rao, a tea-seller in Cuttack, has been changing lives of scores of slum children by not only providing them free education but also free meal. 62-year-old Prakash Rao has been a beacon of hope for around 100 children in a slum. For the last 19 years, Rao has been donating half of his income towards the running of the school. In 2019, Prakash Rao was awarded Padma Shri for his efforts to boost affordable education. 


Prakash Rao was only six-years-old when he started working at his father’s tea-stall. “My father had a tea stall in Cuttack and I used to help him. I wasn’t a regular in school because of my family commitments. Despite being a bright student, I could continue my studies only till Class XI. My father fell ill and I had to run the stall and pay for his medical bills. I didn’t have the means to study. This motivated me to provide opportunities to slum kids who face similar hurdles which I had faced in my childhood.”

Unable to complete his studies because of financial difficulties, Prakash Rao now lives his dream through children living in slums, who do not have money to pay their school fees. Prakash Rao says, “I was a good student. Bright in academics, adept at football. I wanted to become a doctor but landed up becoming a chaiwala. I knew what it was like to not have any opportunities. And I did not want these kids to have the same fate.” He started the ‘Asha O Ashwasana’ school in 2000. Rao took the step of starting the school after the saw the kids in his neighbourhood falling for petty crimes or becoming alcoholics. For every cup of tea sold at his stall, he used half the amount towards the education and health of the slum kids. He first operated from his two-room thatched house, with four children, where he provided them with food and education, completely free of cost.


 “Living and working in a slum, I witnessed the resistance of parents towards education first-hand. Living in their makeshift jhuggi jhopdis, they thought of their children as means of earning income. Instead of enrolling them in schools, these children were enrolled in menial labour. Working odd jobs and becoming domestic helpers, whatever money they earned was often snatched by the men in the home, who would buy alcohol and turn to domestic violence. It deeply affected me, every single day.”


The same parents who complained about education, gratefully look on as they watch their sons and daughters cycle to their colleges today. Rao provides basic level education – from kindergarten to class III for the kids at the school and later helps them to get enrolled in various government schools.  “Every morning, I give time to my tea stall that’s opened between 6am and 10am. From 10am to noon, I come to my school that has around 100 students. Apart from teachers, there are a few volunteers who love to teach. In the afternoon, I again open my tea stall and work till 8pm. Every day I cook dalma for them (a preparation of dal, rice and sabji). It gives me immense joy to see them relish the home-cooked meal that is high in nutrition.

Prakash Rao’s house was damaged when cyclone Fani hit Odisha on May 3rd. However, this didn’t deter his efforts to feed and educate the 100 children at his school. He is struggling with the lack of funds to pay the teachers at the school. Your help can ensure that his dream of providing a quality life to the slum children stays alive.
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25th February 2020



Dear Supporters,

Thank you so much for all the support that you have shown toward our campaign.

With the funds raised through Milaap, we were able to build our house which was completely destroyed due to the cyclone and we have also used the funds toward the betterment of the school and managing the daily expenses. As you all know my father has been unwell since the brain stroke happened and he has been unable to take care of the tea stall. He has no source of income currently due to which the day-to-day needs of the school are taken care of by me. We have to constantly buy new uniforms and purchase books for the students. Apart from this, we need to ensure the school runs smoothly and we wish to provide the best education possible to our children here and bring in more students.


This is only possible with your continued support.

Thank you so much.



Dear Supporters,

Thank you so much for all the support that you have shown toward our campaign.

With the funds raised through Milaap, we were able to build our house which was completely destroyed due to the cyclone and we have also used the funds toward the betterment of the school and managing the daily expenses. As you all know my father has been unwell since the brain stroke happened and he has been unable to take care of the tea stall. He has no source of income currently due to which the day-to-day needs of the school are taken care of by me. We have to constantly buy new uniforms and purchase books for the students. Apart from this, we need to ensure the school runs smoothly and we wish to provide the best education possible to our children here and bring in more students.


This is only possible with your continued support.

Thank you so much.
9th February 2020
Dear Supporters,

Thank you for your love. We have uploaded a picture of students with the uniforms provided through your help. The children are very happy. Thank you again! We shall keep you all posted.
Dear Supporters,

Thank you for your love. We have uploaded a picture of students with the uniforms provided through your help. The children are very happy. Thank you again! We shall keep you all posted.
31st December 2019
Dear Supporters,

Thank you for your love. This winter we provided more than 100 suits to the children along with books. We also managed to provide salaries to the teachers. This means a lot to us. Thank you again.

Dear Supporters,

Thank you for your love. This winter we provided more than 100 suits to the children along with books. We also managed to provide salaries to the teachers. This means a lot to us. Thank you again.

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Rs.0 raised

Goal: Rs.10,000

Beneficiary: Prakash Rao info_outline