Education Minister Thiru. Anbil Mahesh Poyyamozhi lauds the project that aims to educate and
empower 10,000 adolescent boys to become empathetic ‘Gender Champions’
Chennai, 06 th August 2022: Avtar Human Capital Trust, the non-profit arm of Avtar Group, India’s
premier Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Solutions firm, launched MITR (Men Impacting Trust and
Respect) an initiative to usher in the ‘Male Ally’ culture among boys studying in Tamil Nadu
Government Schools. The project was launched at ‘Puthri Ilakku’ marking the completion of five
successful years of Project Puthri.
Puthri Ilakku, a grand event organized by AHCT in Chennai acknowledged and honored the
corporates who have been part of the 5-year Project Puthri journey. The US Consulate General, Ms
Judith Ravin, the Guest of Honor at Puthri Ilakku awarded recognitions to the corporates at the
More than 20 corporates, hundreds of volunteers, Principals of schools from different zones, and
over 300 students gathered at the Puthri Ilakku, 2022.
Project Puthri is India’s first ever developmental project that seeks to create Career Intentionality
among underprivileged girl students. From the time of its launch five years ago by Avtar Human
Capital Trust, Project Puthri has changed the destinies of over 5,000 girls studying in Government
and Corporation Schools.
Following the success of Project Puthri, Avtar Human Capital Trust launched MITR with the sole aim
of instilling gender awareness and sensitivity among adolescent boys. This grass root level
intervention for young boys has been designed for them to be gender-sensitive individuals and
accentuate the transition to an inclusive and equitable future.
India is home to more than 243 million adolescents, who account for more than a quarter of India’s
population, 53% of whom are young men/boys. In the next 5 – 8 years they are slated to become
part of India’s organised workforce. “It is important that adults of tomorrow are gender aware,
sensitive, and operative productively in a gender diverse team. These young boys when they are
developed to be gender sensitive prior to becoming part of the workforce, will work as male allies to
the lakhs of Puthris stepping into white collar jobs in the future”, said Dr Saundarya Rajesh,
Managing Trustee, AHCT, Founder – President of Avtar Group.
MITR is aimed at boys studying in classes from IX th to XII th by educating them on age-appropriate
information in capsules under 4 main segments namely: Intrapersonal Skills, Interpersonal skills, Self
– Management skills, and Gender Sensitivity. The project will be rolled out as a series of workshops
and conversations led by trained mentors and gender experts from the corporate world.
Honourable Minister for School Education, Thiru. Anbil Mahesh Poyyamozhi, through a video
message, lauded the AHCT team for the exemplary work in ensuring a secure and safe future for our
girl children. He also expressed his regret in not being able to attend the event in person as he had
to rush to Thanjavur to ensure safety of people in low lying areas in the wake of the surplus water
being released from Karnataka due to heavy rains.
“Students should place their trust on equality. Project MITR trains boys to become allies, and
advocates for their women counterparts at schools, homes, workplaces, and the society in general. I
am happy to launch such an initiative,” said the minister.
He said that with initiatives such as MITR, AHCT aims to build a bright future for the girl children
which increases the momentum towards making Tamil Nadu and the entire country an economic
superpower. “To encourage girl children to pursue higher education, Chief Minister M K Stalin has
announced that all Govt School girl students from Classes 6-12 will be paid Rs 1,000 a month directly
into their bank accounts till they complete their higher education,” he explained.