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Julia Neubauer: Aiding Slum Kids in India

Having co-created the Ashraya Initiative for Children, a non-profit that three Mahindra UWC graduates started in order to work with needy children in India, Julia Neubauer (Austria, Princeton ’07) says the project is “going better than ever.”

“We now have 11 kids in our residential program and one in foster care,” Julia reported from her job at the Princeton Investment Company, which manages the university’s portfolio.

Having created the residential program to meet the education, health-care and other needs of street children in Pune — and an outreach effort that’s providing a dozen girls who live near the center with schooling and supplies, meals, a warm shower every day and medical care for their families — Ashraya next planned to open a school that will serve about 100 children.

“These kids in our education-outreach program are from a tribe, the Waghri, that was declared criminal during the British years,” Julia said. Tribal members are stigmatized in regular schools, so the new program will give them schooling along with a drop-in facility for family health education. The program is also providing formula for malnourished infants.

“All the children in the slum are being well fed now,” Julia said.