“The backward classes have come to realize that, after all, education is the greatest
material benefit for which they can fight. We may forego material benefits, we may
forego material benefits of civilization, but we cannot forego our right and
opportunities to reap the benefit of the highest education to the fullest extent. That
the importance of this question from the point of view of the backward classes who
have just realized that without education their existence is not safe.”
-Dr. B.R. Ambedkar
Dalits have historically been a socio-economic depressed group. Although reservations (A.K.A. affirmative action) have been enacted by the Indian government to help correct historic inequities, Dalits continue to face widespread discrimination at all levels in education. In some regions, as many as 50% of school dropouts from grades 1-5 are Dalits. Teachers and students in higher education often get antagonized for being Dalits and/or working to raise awareness of Dalits and Scheduled Castes.
AANA, like Dr. Ambedkar, believes education empowers underprivileged castes to help advance their careers, give back to their community, and inspire others. We strive to be an ally for deserving members in these underprivileged communities. Our committee selects students for scholarships based on their dedication to their studies, potential to contribute back to their communities, and financial neediness. Since 2009, we have helped over 20 students pursue post-secondary education in various fields, including law, social sciences and engineering, in universities all over the world.