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Cognizant’s employee volunteering programme titled Outreach has completed 10 years and impacted 4,50,000 lives through its work in the areas of education, community welfare and environment. During this period, over 100,000 Cognizant employees clocked in two million hours of volunteering across 20 countries, making Outreach one of the largest corporate volunteering efforts.
Outreach has partnered with over 160 schools across India, primarily Government and Government-aided schools in urban and rural areas, to conduct additional classroom sessions in Science, Computing, Mathematics, English and other subjects to help increase learning levels among children. Outreach volunteers teach nearly 100 classroom sessions in India every week. As a result of the new and innovative teaching methods adopted by Outreach volunteers, many schools have recorded 100% pass percentage in class X and XII board examinations, and over 150,000 school children have made informed career choices with Outreach's career awareness sessions.
Since 2012, the Outreach scholarship programme has supported the education of over 1,400 students based on merit, 72 per cent of them being girls. Over 90 per cent of these scholars are first-time graduates, and most have now secured careers in top companies, including Cognizant.
In addition, Outreach volunteers coach visually challenged students for competitive exams, conducts life skills sessions, and record audio books and assists them as scribes in exams. The volunteers also conduct regular learning sessions for children with learning disabilities.
As a technology company, Cognizant employees understand the power of technology and have therefore included virtual volunteering opportunities as part of its new charter to expand the scope of volunteering in remote areas. Through video-conferencing, Cognizant employees around the globe have started engaging with children in rural and remote areas to further the impact of Outreach’s educational initiatives.
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18 Feb 2018 | Gwynne Dyer
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