Founder, Kranti School
Robin helped organise a successful campaign to change US armed forces policy after being forced to leave her position as an Air Force officer because of her sexuality. The experience inspired her to go into teaching and to found an NGO in India called Kranti.
Kranti (‘Revolution’ in Hindi) empowers marginalised girls in Mumbai’s red light district to become agents of social change. Robin’s students, the Krantikaries (‘Revolutionaries’), are aged 12-20 and include victims of trafficking and daughters of sex workers. The school is truly diverse with different ages, literacy levels, languages, ethnicities, religions, castes and abilities. With Robin’s help, the Krantikaries develop into peer teachers and community leaders.
The curriculum includes creative thinking, yoga, meditation, writing, geography and music and is supplemented by evening classes in English, ICT, theatre and health education. At weekends, the girls watch films, visit exhibitions and complete mandatory voluntary work for an NGO of their choice.
Robin has formalised a social justice curriculum at Kranti covering key issues that affect the girls’ lives which they use to design and implement projects. In 2013, they convinced an MP to help them register sex workers to vote. They have led workshops for more than 100,000 people and delivered 11 TEDx talks around the world. They toured a play they wrote about their experiences across the USA, performing at the headquarters of Facebook and Google.