Turning his back on a lucrative career and a vibrant life in the cities, Chennai-born Anirudh Prasadh has no hesitation in speaking about the changes he wants to make in rural India within the next one year and his dream to be that change agent. He is one of the 35 candidates selected for the SBI Youth for India (YFI) Fellowship Programme, giving him an opportunity to lend a helping hand for rural upliftment.
MSSRF is a partner institution in the SBI Youth for India programme initiated, funded, and managed by the State Bank of India. Other partners include BAIF Development Research Foundation (BAIF) Seva Mandir, Gram Vikas, and Aga Khan Rural Support Programme. In its second edition this year after its launch in 2011, the initiative has attracted young successful professionals from diverse sectors such as IT, biotech, education, infrastructure and healthcare.
The Fellowship Programme seeks to help India secure an equitable and sustainable growth path by providing educated Indian youth with an opportunity to touch lives and create positive change at the grassroot level in rural India.
Fellows such as Anirudh and Odisha-born Tanaya Mohanty have chosen MSSRF as the institution to work towards creating change. “I always wanted to be a part of welfare Programmes conducted by MSSRF in rural villages of India. My interests lie in the Mahila Kisan Sashaktikaran Pariyojana, (MKSP) initiative of MSSRF in Vidarbha, Maharashtra. I have a strong inclination to work on women’s empowerment”, said Tanaya Mohanty.
Anirudh and Tanaya accompany 35 other candidates selected through a rigorous process to work in a rural intervention of MSSRF’s programme for next one year. Far from their urban lifestyle, friends and jobs, they dream to make a difference in far-flung rural locations of India and hope for the will and ability to create change – a change that will give the community hope to live a much better life.
M S Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF) established in 1988 is a not-for-profit trust. MSSRF was envisioned and founded by Professor M S Swaminathan, agriculture scientist with proceeds from the First World Food Prize that he received in 1987.