by Tonie Hansen

India is home to almost 1,000 NVIDIA employees in Pune, Hyderabad and Bangalore – three rapidly changing, dynamic cities that are among the centers of India’s technology industry.  Our employees there are passionate about tackling some of India’s toughest social issues through organized charitable activities

In Pune and Bangalore, the employees have adopted schools for visually-impaired youth. They’ve used their own funds (matched by the NVIDIA Foundation) to provide school supplies and support teacher salaries. And this year in Bangalore employees connected the Snehadeep Trust for the Disabled with one of our 2008 High Impact Grant recipients (Sankara Eye Institute) to provide eye exams, corrective lenses and even cataract surgery that helped a blind teacher regain partial vision.

JHH Visit 168 An instructor at Snehadeep shows Jen-Hsun Huang how he explains the concept of computer fonts to blind youth.

Jagriti School for Blind Girls in Pune recently kicked off a fundraising campaign to rebuild their school, boarding facility and vocational training center. NVIDIA employees in Pune have raised enough money to fund a classroom, which should be completed within the next two years, and plan to do a second round of fundraising during the upcoming Diwali holidays.

Picture 005 The students in this photo will soon have a new classroom in which to learn English, computers and vocational skills.

Our products give us a lot of connections in the animation and gaming industries. So we’ve reached out to this ecosystem by asking executives in these industries to meet with Jagriti School to see if there are vocational opportunities for the girls to explore. Some possible careers that look promising include work in office administration or sound-quality assurance.

In Hyderabad, the employees  adopted a government primary school five years ago. Employees started by providing backpacks, books and sanitation supplies. Two years ago they took a big leap and pooled their funds with the NVIDIA Foundation and the (Jen-Hsun and Lori) Huang Foundation to completely demolish and rebuild the two room school, which had become unsafe. When the state government of Andhra Pradesh learned of our activities, they offered additional financial support, and two years later the school is a two-story structure with six rooms. Now that the infrastructure has been greatly improved, the employees focus on supporting the salaries of three teachers in the school as well as teaching aids for several children of migrant workers.

Picture 6042 A room from the recently rebuilt Hyderabad primary school.

There’s tremendous opportunity in all these projects to improve the lives of underprivileged youth, and it’s exciting to see them come out of the partnership between the NVIDIA Foundation and local employees.