“Look around you. And try to help in the best possible way you can.”

From a very young age, Mrs Kiran Kalantri shared a love and passion for teaching. She often enjoyed giving guidance, advice and counsel, as well as teaching her siblings. It was this inherent trait that directed her quest to become a teacher.

As a connoisseur of art and creativity, Kiran often dabbled in cooking, painting, crafts and rangoli making. She made the most of every opportunity to learn something new and expand her horizon. From such a place of art and learning came her decision to start working with UPAY. She was encouraged and supported by her brother and sister-in-law to pursue the same. 

Kiran Kalantri upay ngo volunteer children education nagpur footpaathshala

Soon, she joined a Footpathshaala centre in Nagpur. Her loving and caring nature won the hearts of the children as well as her fellow volunteers. On the pavements of the busy road, she teaches the street children the very basics of language and maths. 

It’s been more than 4 years that she is devoted to the cause. During this entire period, she not only developed herself as a great leader but also has become a person every student and volunteer looks up to. 

Her rapport with the community has saved many lives in the community we work with. There was a time when one student from the centre was severely ill and the family neither had money nor had any understanding of how to deal with the situation. During the child’s 15 day long stay at the hospital, Kiran would always be around him to take care of him. She brought him meals and stayed with the child even when the child’s parents refused to. It was because of her that we could admit the child and get him treated.

Kiran Kalantri upay ngo volunteer children education teaching kidsc

Right from education, to fulfilling basic hygiene and sanitation issues. From addressing the health issues to making sure each person in the community has their official identity proofs, she does it all!

When asked what she admired the most about working at UPAY, she replied that it was the organisation’s transparency and accountability that caught her eye the most. She makes it a point to uphold this transparency while interacting with the external stakeholders. 

She has a pivotal role in the development and progress of the entire community that lives on the streets of Burdi in Nagpur. It is a matter of great pride for all of us that today, the Footpathshaala in Nagpur’s Sitaburdi has become the first centre to have a student who passed class 12th!

Kiran Kalantri upay ngo volunteer children education nagpur UPAY

Working in social services is not an easy task.  Yet each day, many continue to work in this sector to help strengthen their communities. According to Mrs Kiran, honesty, genuine care and concern are crucial requirements for the job. One needs to constantly ensure that their work isn’t driven by personal motives or gains but by a sheer dream to bring about a social change, big or small.

We are fortunate to have such an inquisitive and kind soul working amongst us.

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