In Hindi, Pardada Pardadi means "great-grandparents." An integral part of ancient Indian wisdom revolves around family; the value-based knowledge and education a child receives from an invested community is a crucial component of her successful transformation into an adult. With that in mind, the school chose this name because it goes beyond basic education; it teaches girls the values and principles that will help them blossom into more well-rounded individuals in adulthood, much as great-grandparents teach their grandchildren how to be moral and contributing members of society.
Since 2000, Pardada Pardadi Educational Society (PPES) has been improving the lives of females in rural India. Its mission is to empower community women from the poorest sections of society. To do this, we provide free education for girls and job opportunities for women, thereby creating a new generation of self-reliant and educated females who will break the cycle of poverty in the region.
PPES is based in the tehsil (territorial division within a district) of Anupshahar, which is in the Bulandshahar district of the state Uttar Pradesh, India. Bulandshahar is infamous for its poverty, crime, and child marriages. Moreover, it is one of the least educated and literate sections of India.
PPES was founded by Virendra (Sam) Singh, a retired head of DuPont South Asia. Sam grew up in Anupshahar and although he left many years ago, he moved back in 1999 to use his success to uplift his childhood community.
Sam knew that to break the cycle of poverty, he had to first focus on improving the quality of life for the weakest members of this society: rural female children. Female children here are considered an economic and social burden. Forgotten and uneducated, they are forever dependent upon their husbands or male family members for their livelihood. This leads to a cycle of repression, abuse, and neglect that can only be broken with the self-reliance and enlightenment that education brings.