Nearly 266 million adults in India cannot read or write, and are thereby deprived of critical growth opportunities. To address this deficiency, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) came up with the Adult Literacy Program (ALP) in the year 2000. ALP runs on TCS’ proprietary Computer-based Functional Literacy (CBFL) solution, which employs innovative information and communications technology solutions to promote literacy.
The CBFL solution enables adult learners to read, write, and perform basic arithmetic within 50-55 learning hours. Its prime focus is on words rather than alphabets, thus enabling students to acquire a 700-word vocabulary in nine Indian and three foreign languages. The program uses a combination of teaching methods such as software, multimedia presentations, and printed materials. Animated graphics, voice-overs, and puppets are also employed to make the learning process more enjoyable.
TCS has partnered with local governments, non-governmental organizations, corporates, academic institutions, as well as jail authorities in 15 states to implement ALP. In collaboration with the local prisons authority, TCS has achieved 100% literacy at the district jail in Lucknow, India, by making 1,431 inmates functionally literate.
Today, ALP has surpassed half a million beneficiaries. In FY18, the focus has also been on women beneficiaries, who have accounted for more than 80% of total reach so far.
“Literacy has opened up a whole new world for me. Reading newspapers, signing documents, helping my children with their homework – these were things I could not do in the past. Now, I can do all this and more!”