How This Indian State is Transforming Trans Lives through “Padanaveedu” Initiative 

Kerala, celebrated for its progressive and inclusive ethos, is scripting a remarkable tale of empowerment and education. With a transgender history, this South Indian state has consistently stood at the forefront of social change.  

In this narrative of hope and progress, the Kerala State Literacy Mission’s initiative, ‘Padanaveedu,’ a scheme that emerges as a hope to transgender people development. By providing free education and opportunities, it is changing the lives of transgender individuals, offering them a chance to pursue their dreams and build brighter futures. 

This effort is part of the Samanwaya scheme, launched in 2017 with the aim to provide free education for transgender individuals. ‘Padanaveedu,’ a vital component of this scheme, was established with financial assistance from the social justice department. 

Beneficiaries Reaction on ‘Padanaveedu’ 

As a recent beneficiary of this scheme, Ziya Paval, a transgender student, shared her personal experience. She mentioned, “I completed my higher secondary equivalency course and have now enrolled for a BA in English.”  

She added, “Padanaveedu provides a good opportunity for transgender people to pick up from where they had to leave their academic journeys due to various reasons. I request everyone in the community to make the best use of the scheme to continue their education,”  

She highlighted the significance of Padanaveedu in offering transgender individuals the opportunity to continue their academic journeys, which they might have had to interrupt for various reasons.  

Holistic Approach to Education 

Padanaveedu, located in the Pathanamthitta district of Kerala, is a key component of the Samanwaya scheme. This initiative was designed to provide free education to the transgender community, enabling them to access higher secondary equivalency courses and create a pathway towards higher education. 

The coordinator of ‘Padanaveedu,’ Niza J, provided insights into the program’s progress, stating, “Samanwaya was launched in 2017 with an aim to provide free education for transgender people. ‘Padanaveedu’ was set up with financial assistance from the social justice department. So far, 62 transgender people have completed higher secondary equivalency courses, and 16 completed Class X equivalency courses. Now, 12 transgender people have been admitted to new batches.” 

Niza further emphasized that the Literacy Mission has been actively running special campaigns to encourage more transgender individuals to enroll in courses under ‘Samanwaya.’  

As part of these studies, awareness programs and job-oriented training are being provided to students, ensuring a well-rounded education and skills development. 

Through Padanaveedu, transgender people across the state of Kerala have the opportunity to pick up where they left off in their academic journeys.  

The program not only offers educational support but also includes accommodation facilities and provides a monthly scholarship of ₹1200 to assist with the cost of living. 

The Kerala State Literacy Mission’s efforts to provide free education and support for the transgender community, as exemplified by Padanaveedu, offer hope and opportunities for individuals who may have faced barriers in their educational journeys. By facilitating higher education and skills development, the initiative aims to empower transgender individuals to achieve their career goals and lead fulfilling lives. 

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