Varthana partners with those education entrepreneurs who have a sense of urgency about improving access to quality education in low-income communities. These entrepreneurs are usually (not always) ex-educators themselves, who have spent time teaching children in the neighborhood and have then slowly expanded to start a school. They are driven by their mission to provide a robust education, often far superior to the government alternatives.
These schools may not have large playgrounds or the latest teaching technology, but we have seen that these school owners are keen to embrace innovations that will help them deliver high quality education outcomes. Almost always, they are faced with lack of capital for expanding their classrooms and facilities, and inadequate access to academic and extra-curricular tools / resources to provide holistic learning to their students. Varthana aims to fill this need by providing loan capital to these schools so that they can expand their infrastructure, invest in teacher training and introduce new learning methods / tools / resources etc.
While loan capital is the starting point of our engagement with schools, we also want to empower school owners by connecting them with other resources such as technology, curriculum, training and access to networks of institutions / people who can be long term strategic partners.
Our relationship managers understand how busy school entrepreneurs are with daily school management, and hence focus on making the entire loan process as easy and efficient as possible.
If a school owner wants to add an additional classroom, our relationship manager will visit the school to better understand the proposal and evaluate the school’s ability to payback the required loan in an acceptable time frame. None of this involves cumbersome and impossible paperwork requests, but is instead done using practical indicators and simple credit checks. Our endeavor is to be a school’s most valuable partner as it grows and improves. We do that by being agile, responsive and supportive while ensuring minimal disruption in the school routine.
We also follow up after the loan is disbursed. By maintaining contact with the school entrepreneur, we are able to help identify additional resources and strategic partners that help improve learning outcomes at the school.
It is through this continuous engagement that we build deep relationships and partner with our schools over the long term.
APS sector does not have access to the financing necessary to expand and improve. This is the gap Varthana aims to fill. See Case Study