Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Pratham Books is Hiring: UX Designer

Pratham Books is a not-for-profit children's book publisher that was set up in 2004 to publish good quality, affordable books in many Indian languages. Our mission is to see ‘a book in every child’s hand’ and we have spread the joy of reading to millions of children in India. In the last three years, we have invested deeply in technology-based initiatives to further our mission. We are now looking for a Data Analyst as we significantly scale these initiatives.

StoryWeaver is a digital platform that hosts stories in languages from India and beyond, so that every child can have an endless stream of stories in her mother tongue to read and enjoy. The stories can be read, translated, versioned or downloaded for free. All stories on the platform are openly licensed and the goal is to open source the code as well. In two years, StoryWeaver has scaled from 800 stories in 24 languages to 7800 stories in 111 languages by engaging with a community of users. We want every child to have access to quality reading resources in their own language.

StoryWeaver is being recognized as an emerging innovation that can transform the early literacy reader ecosystem globally. Our vision is for StoryWeaver to be the largest multilingual open library in the world for children by empowering communities to address the scarcity of reading resources in their mother tongue languages and scale the quantity and quality of content being produced.

Job Description:

We are looking for a passionate individual wanting to make a difference, one who believes that technology can be a powerful enabler in creating equitable access to resources. This role requires an individual contributor who can work effectively, both independently and collaboratively, in a team environment and deliver the project in a timely manner within allocated resources and budgets.

We are looking for a UX designer to work closely alongside our Product Development team in Bangalore.
Illustration by Radhika Tipnis
We’re looking for a self-motivated, detail-oriented individual who strongly believes in the power of a Good user experience. You will work closely with the internal teams and other Design partners. The person needs to be an out-of-the box thinker and should be a strong believer and propagator of use of open technologies.

Key Responsibilities:
  • UX designs for new features and enhancements on the platform
  • Translate concepts into user flows, mockups and prototypes (use cases) that lead to intuitive user experiences (where the screen would fit in the current website flow)
  • Create workflows, customer journey maps and designs for requirements provided by the Product Development team
  • Requirements gathering/ internal interviews for better understanding of features
  • Take a user-centered design approach and rapidly test and iterate your designs
  • Collaborate with other team members and stakeholders
  • Web screen (browser-based) and Mobile responsive
  • Prototyping
  • User testing and documentation: testing  the  prototypes with key stakeholders, documenting the experience, etc. 
  • Support Content & Marcom teams on illustrations/ designs on a need basis

Location: Position is based out of Bangalore. Project is expected to complete within a 2 year time-frame.

Salary: Compensation will be commensurate with experience.

Please send your resumé to with 'UX Designer' in the subject line of the email.

"Show a people as one thing, as only one thing, over and over again, and that is what they become." | Beyond the stereotype

Novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie has spoken eloquently and often of "the danger of a single story" -- and it is these "single stories" that help gender bias along. A single way of seeing how girls should look. How boys should be. What's acceptable. What's admirable.

When our Instagram friend, mommyingtales, reached out about her  campaign on #agenerationwithoutgenderbias, we were only to happy to put together a list of #genderpositive storybooks for kids.

We're committed to the idea of "many stories" about gender. Our stories feature everyday heroes like the motorbike-riding Games teacher, Miss Laya, and a grandmother who invents machines to do daily chores around the house. They shine a light on inspiring Indian role models like scientist, Anna Mani, and Olympic gymnast, Dipa Karmakar. They share the joy of a father cooking for his daughter, or a young boy, Kali, who pursues his love for Bharatanatyam. They walk us in the footsteps of girls who long to fly, or play football, or love to eat.

After all, as Adichie says, "The single story creates stereotypes, and the problem with stereotypes is not that they are untrue, but that they are incomplete. They make one story become the only story."

Here's a list of some of our favourite #genderpositive stories in different languages from Pratham Books. Just click to shop.

Meet Sooraj's inventive grandmother
Make friends with purple Puchku 
Be inspired by Dipa Karmakar
Meet brave little Ana
Riju and Manju teach you a thing or two about computers
Say hello to young Manikantan
Enjoy a hearty meal with Neema

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Building a Book Bank!

In 2016, NIPUN set up a campaign on the Donate-a-Book platform to raise funds for the kids they were working with. NIPUN is a non-profit organization that works towards enhancing the quality of life of the needy and the vulnerable. They are currently working with marginalized families who have migrated to Delhi from neighbouring states in search of employment. Casual labour, domestic services, rickshaw pullers and petty trading are among the major sources of livelihood. Many of the children in these families do not have access to education and this is the reason why NIPUN started a campaign to give these kids access to books - right at their doorstep!

Nipun was only able to raise 12% of the funds they needed and eventually received 118 books. But these books have already been read by hundreds of children in the J.J clusters of Meer Bagh, Delhi. The children have also enthusiastically created a library club in the community.

When asked about the experience of creating a campaign on Donate-a-Book platform :
“Due to funds constraint we could not set up a library for the underprivileged children but now due to this campaign we got books which are being used to set up the community library.”

If just 118 books could spread the joy of reading, imagine the magic many, many more books could create.

NIPUN has set up another campaign to help the children they serve have access to more books. They aim to empower underprivileged children with a special focus on girls. Presently around 600 children are enrolled at various centres where Nipun is providing them with pre-school and remedial education, and eventually mainstreaming them into Government School. NIPUN would like to create a book bank for these children to inculcate better reading habits, promote joyful learning and to reduce the drop-out rate.

Join them in their endeavour and help them get more books for their library! This monsoon, make it rain books on NIPUN's book bank campaign.


Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Opening a Book Together

“The kids couldn’t believe there was going to be a library in their school! First they kept asking whether a library was really going to be set up in their schools. When we said 'Yes!´ their eyes widened and we could catch a sparkle dancing in their eyes. When they saw that we were arranging the books, they offered to help (and actually helped as well).” 
- Ruchi Dhona (Founder, Let’s Open a Book)

What a heartwarming reaction to receiving books! All made possible by the generous donations to the campaign 'Let's Open a Book' started on our crowdfunding platform Donate-a-Book.

‘Let’s Open a Book’ was founded in January 2015. The idea came up when they started working on reviving an under-utilized library on an NGO campus. 

Since then, they have helped 15 government schools in Gurgaon and Spiti valley set up libraries on their campus, directly reaching over 1000 children. 

The Library-in-a-classroom kits are being given to those schools which do not have any existing libraries. Children can borrow books from these libraries to read. They also carry out fun activities such as read alouds, storytelling etc. 

When asked about the ease of setting up the campaign on our platform, Ruchi said “It was a very good experience as we could conveniently set up a books donation drive and send the link to people. It was really quite easy to set up the campaign”

Here is a little snapshot of where our books have reached :

Let’s Open a Book is aiming to reach 20 more schools in Spiti Valley this year. Help them reach their target by making a small donation towards their campaign on Donate-a-Book. Let us join hands together and help kids open a book!