Program Highlights

School Sponsorship Program


Education builds a better future - for a student, a community, a region, and the world. Thanks to 56 dedicated Aruna Partnership sponsors, 20 children attend our Sri Sundaram & Alagammal School (SSA elementary school), and 36 attend our Sri Ramana Maharshi School (SRM matriculation school).

Your gifts make it possible for impoverished rural children to receive a quality education while remaining in their village communities. Share the joy of learning with your sponsor child. Three students urgently need sponsors:

Harish. Grade 11Sivanesan. Grade 6Prasana. Grade 3
Grade 11
Grade 6
Grade 3

Professional Training Program (PTP)

As India's middle class emerges and the national economic outlook improves, those living below the poverty line are often left further and further behind.

The lack of economic, social and cultural opportunities places a heavy burden on students in our area. Without vocational and professional training, job prospects are extremely bleak even for high school graduates.

Most students in PTP are the first in their family to get a high school diploma, or receive higher education. Often their parents are illiterate. Even when parents are committed to educating their children, the majority of families are incapable of providing financial support.


Our students are beginning at very basic levels. They need help with building self- confidence and social skills, and with understanding the dynamics of a workplace. Exposure visits to a local bicycle factory or health center help students learn how people interact at work, what they wear and do and say.

Because PTP has a high job placement success rate, we have hundreds of applicants each year.

  • Pleased with progress their PTP students are making, the Moxie Foundation has recently granted new funding for an additional 20 students.
  • 50% of the PTP participants are from our Sri Ramana Maharshi School; the other 50% come from schools throughout the district.
  • Most students are in vocational training, learning to be mechanics, machinists, or electricians. Academically gifted students may become an engineer, a registered nurse, a paramedic, or in exceptional cases, a doctor.

Please consider supporting one of these deserving applicants.

If you know of a corporation that might be interested in our PTP grant proposal, please contact us at info@arunapartnership.

Om Shanthi Project

Anna Etter, founder of Om Shanthi, says she still waits "for the day, when the first of our widows will agree to wear a flower in her hair. This will mean tradition has lost its heavy grip, because widows normally are not allowed to do so."

Your generous donations:

Front of Florence Home
  • Built a second house for aged widows in an incredibly short time. "Florence Home" was dedicated on August 20th. Thank you to all who helped create this beautiful refuge for another 13 elderly women in need!
  • Expanded the kitchen to twice the original size. Now food can easily be prepared for the women in both houses
    Anna Etter with widowExpanded Kitchen
  • Help young widows working in the Handicraft Training Program gain confidence and skill. The crafts they produce are very high quality and are selling well, in India, Europe, and here in the States.
  • Support two social workers who write applications for government pensions for widows in need. This is essential, as the widows are unable to fill out the paperwork by themselves.
  • Opened a new counseling center that helps young widows and other women in desperate circumstances find jobs and/or get further training and education.

"Giri Valam Shanthi Seva" - Environmental Awareness Program

Arunachala, the sacred Mountain at the center of our district, has been revered by the Indian people for thousands of years. Pilgrims from all over the world circle the Mountain daily on the Giri Valam Road. Without organized trash pickup, toxic waste from litter causes a serious health risk, especially for children. Huge quantities of plastic increasingly contaminate the ground water.

Amma (Anne Maier, who along with her husband Dr. Hugo Maier, founded Shanthimalai Trust) has begun cleaning 7 km of the road. Her devoted offering has gained recognition and become known as "Giri Valam Shanthi Seva". Thanks to her, we all have an opportunity to participate in the blessings of this program.

To date:

  • 300 trash barrels have been installed along the Giri Valam road.
  • Volunteers from Shanthimalai pick up trash in teams twice a day.
  • The project now employs many widows in need of work.
  • School children also participate through the new "Giri Valam Shanti Seva" Environmental Awareness program.
  • Awareness is changing. People are beginning to use the trash barrels. Together we CAN make a difference!
Environmental Awareness Program