The social responsibility initiative named “PROJECT SHINE”envisages a simple, yet powerful initiative that brings social progress through education in an innovative manner. This project was a  Public – Private pariticipatory social initaiative to train children from marginalised communities to gain admission in various residential schools like Sainik School and Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya in the state of Kerala.

Project Journey from 2015 till 2020

During 2015, Project Shine was initiated by the alumni of 1991 from Sainik School, Kazhakootam, Thirvananthapuram (Ministry of Defence) – under the aegis of the Old Boys Association (OBASSKZM).

15 students out of the 24 who appeared for the All India Sainik School Entrance Exam on 03 January 2016 qualified for the final round of interview/medical exam and after intensive medical tests and a personal interview, 6 students out of the 15 who appeared for the second round of tests were selected to join Sainik School, Kazhakootam in the academic year 2015-16. This was an unprecedented performance by children from Attapadi Tribal Area, in Palghat, Kerala, with  the innovative coaching sessions using SEL.

After this success story each year from 2016 till 2020  hundred children were been trained using the Socio-Emotional Learning (SEL) strategy for over 300 hours in a span of 9 months . Their academic performance, physical health, mental health and social and emotional health are being assessed  and monitored on a continuous basis. Ten facilitators were been used for this, which includes the founders of CARSEL and 8 facilitators who had been recruited and provided training in the SEL process.

The State Governement has included the project in the green book and is part of the “Promotion of Education Among Scheduled Tribes (P) project.

Saturdays and Sundays were been used for providing training to the selected children. Seven days of residential camps were conducted during Onam and Pooja holidays. All the children were been  provided conveyance to reach the campus during the days of training . The facilitators maintain regular (weekly) telephonic converstaion with the parents of these children. Facilitators visited the homes of the children to understand more about their living conditions and also to understand more about the environment of their respective students. Periodic health check ups and monitoring were also been provided.

More than 3 parental awareness sessions were conducted to create awareness about proper parenting ,health & hygeine and how to create a positive environment at home. The availability of basic documents of the children were also tracked during this training tenure and helped their parents to obtain them. 


Shri. Babu Mathew, Founder of CARSEL: “It is incredible how our SEL Approach has turned things around for the children in the last six months. We have been able to establish a strong emotional bond with the children, thus significantly influencing their learning curve. The involvement of the batch members, along with their spouses, has inculcated a level of positive eagerness and enthusiasm towards learning. The values instilled in the children are for the long term: taking personal responsibility, cultivating a sharing mentality, and imbibing the intrinsic urge to excel in the activities they participate in.”

Shri P.B. Nooh IAS, Sub-Collector, Ottapalam: “I am very happy about the new project being executed by the Sainik School Alumni batch of 1991. I have seen the project implementation equipping the tribal students for the entrance exam and I have experienced in person the progress achieved by these children over the few months. It is also in my interest that these kinds of successful models should be scaled up and I am happy this team of Sainik School alumni is behind this project. And I am sure it could bring in massive change in the life of, at least, a few children who participated in this training.”

Dr Sunil Rajendran, leading Vascular Surgeon, Kozhikode (Batch of 1991): “Project Shine has been about future empowerment at the grassroots level. The emphasis is not just on the preparations for the Sainik School entrance exam, but also on all-round development of the children. The transformation is visible: the body language and the attitude have undergone a sea change and their parents are full invested in the project. The key is making them realise there are infinite possibilities beyond what they have been led to believe.”



“In a first, Attappady tribal children get admission to Sainik School”, THE HINDU, 16 March 2016:
“‘Project Shine’ empowers six more tribal kids”, DECCAN CHRONICLE, 15 March 2016:
“Tribal children take a step closer to Sainik School”, THE HINDU, 14 February 2016:
“‘Project Shine’ helps tribals to get into Sainik School”, DECCAN CHRONICLE, 7 February 2016:
“Sainik school alumni train tribal kids to join alma mater”, TIMES OF INDIA, 4 January 2016:
“Tribal kids prepare for Sainik school”, DECCAN CHRONICLE, December 16 2015:
“Sainik School May Get ‘Shining Stars’ From Attappadi“, THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS, 28 November 2015:



“‘PROJECT SHINE’ a beacon of hope to Attapadi ST students”, MATHRUBHUMI NEWS:
“Project Shine; Kazhaks mentor tribal boys to join Alma Mater”, MATHRUBHUMI NEWS:


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