The words of British statesman, Lord Chesterfield, ‘If we do not plant knowledge when young, it will give us no shade when we are old’ have been Akiraa PS’ motivation to do something for the world.Born and brought up in Miryalaguda in Telangana, 26-year-old Akiraa PS is trying to promote literacy among students in rural areas by building libraries. He wants every child to grow up to become contributors to the society.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>It all began in 2006, on the first day of his engineering college in Hyderabad, Akira was mocked by his teacher for not understanding English. “I told her that my past education was completed in Telugu medium and that I was unable to understand her class,” recalls Akiraa. However, she continued to embarrass him and asked him to write a letter to the chief minister of Andhra Pradesh to conduct classes in his mother tongue. Two years later, when he’d had enough, he decided to take charge and help children like him who get mistreated just because they do not the English language. He then started Small Library Foundation in 2011. As part of their campaigns, they collected books through their volunteers which were then given to the needy for free.“We developed a plan through which we could help children understand English easily. As we all know, books play a very important role in a child’s development. The more books children read, the faster their vocabulary is developed.Reading books also increases knowledge of various subjects,” explains Akiraa.Now, Small Library Foundation has come up with more than 100 libraries and have shipped 120,000 books to underprivileged children not just in India but also to Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh, Kenya, Nairobi and Peru.To further his quest to make the world a better place for children, Akiraa, who is currently a To Do School Fellow in Germany, has also undertaken a new venture called My Dream Toy Store, an online store where he aims to help disadvantaged kids to design their dream toys.This story is one of the participants of Our Better World’s Good Story Pitch.
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