Stories

Om’s Story: Beyond Cake and Presents


Om Tandon isn’t your typical ten-year-old. For his birthday, he wasn’t focused on getting presents. Instead, he focused on what he could give. Om wanted to give ten kids his age the gift of reading.

The idea to raise money came to him after a family visit to Mumbai to see Pratham’s programs, including a Balwadi preschool class and a reading program at an urban learning center. Om saw firsthand that not all kids were fortunate enough to attend schools like his back in California. He learned that, due to Pratham’s low-cost, volunteer-driven models, $25 could educate one Indian child for a whole year.

Back at home, with just a few clicks, Om linked his birthday invitation to the Pratham donation site. To give ten kids the gift of reading would cost $250. Before he knew it, Om’s invitation had raised over $1,000—more than four times his goal!

At his birthday party, Om’s friends eagerly posed for pictures celebrating their donations, while their parents learned about the impact Pratham has on millions of India’s children. Om felt lucky his birthday was cause for celebration both here and halfway around the world.

You too can use your birthday or other celebration to help end illiteracy in India. Learn more.


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