Back to overview

Niveditha Uthrapathi Shakila

Niveditha studied to be an engineer and was a part of a student run NGO that worked with local children’s homes. There, she saw the need to strengthen primary education at the grassroots level and joined Teach For India to work in an under-resourced public school. She taught 65 children and worked with the larger school and community ecosystems towards fostering systemic support for education.

She then worked as a Programme Manager at Teach For India where she led a team of teachers and worked on curriculum development, instructional training and programme design. Towards understanding and bridging the gap between theory and research, she pursued her master’s in Education Science and Technology. She has worked at Aflatoun since February 2021. 

Why do you work for Aflatoun International?  

I believe education is an instrument of change, and, through strengthening education, we can solve the world’s problems. I have seen the need for social and financial education on ground in my previous work and hence, the focus areas of Aflatoun are aligned to my personal vision and I am excited to contribute and learn from this diverse team. 

What is your role at the organisation?  

I work as the education manager where I support and lead the efforts of the curriculum team. 

How would you explain what you do to a 5-year-old?  

I help the team that makes the Aflatoun books. 

Why is social and financial education important?  

Social education is aligned to the humanisation principles of education and are ever relevant in any society. I am glad that it is receiving more attention at a policy level. 

Financial literacy on the other hand, in my opinion, has somehow been missed in educational reforms and is expected to be gained at home. Every “what I wished I learnt at school” survey highlights these two as areas that have been missed in mainstream education, and are extremely relevant and needed to thrive in society. 

What do you like most about Aflatoun International?  

The people, diverse in every aspect and united by their passion towards the work and cause of Aflatoun.  

What is something NGOs have to deal with that you want to fix?  

I think NGOs face the struggle of reinventing the wheel and starting something from scratch when there’s so much out there already. I think Aflatoun is helping in the way they work and support partners and our network. In my role, I can be cognizant of this fact and prioritise the same for the curriculum team. 

How do you see the future of Aflatoun International?  

I believe Aflatoun’s work at an international level brings much needed global focus to the fields of social and financial education, especially for the most vulnerable populations. This can further influence policy and foster the ecosystem to support international development towards the SDGs. 

Please share with us a motto or quote close to your philosophy of life.  

“Work is love made visible.” – Khalil Gibran