Arul Anandar College (Autonomous), is conceived as a forerunner of rural higher education in the context of its organic relationship with the communities in the neighborhood villages. Despite the college had significant academic achievements, it did not have a mechanism to collect, maintain and exchange the data relevant to rural communities in its target villages. Keeping this in mind, the college initiated a data centre called Rural Resource Data Archive (RRDA) with a very modest financial support from Stitching Porticus of Netherlands for establishing the proposed data centre. The centre collected household information of the entire Chellampatti Panchayat Union, information on infrastructure such as educational institutions, financial institutions, and other government institutions and documented them. Realizing the need for making the available data useful by promoting development research this centre has been officially rechristened as Arrupe Centre for Policy Research (ACPR) in later years. Noting the vibrancy of ACPR, the college motivated this unit to move further and help people in every possible manner. Hence, ACPR undertook the process of helping the people to prepare development project by organizing Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA). In order to inculcate a sense of commitment among the panchayat leaders ACPR organized a one-day training to all the elected panchayat leaders of Chellampatti Panchayat Union. The development programmes of ACPR experienced a facelift when it entered into an agreement with Commonwealth of Learning in the year 2007. In partnership with COL the centre established the Britto Agro Informatic Centre, organized Vaigai Vivasaigal Nala Sangam and established collaboration with other partners such as VIDIYAL in Theni District, RSGA at Reddiyar Chathram. The potentialities of this unit were tapped by NISG for a UN sponsored software development project and ACPR successfully completed all its agreed responsibilities. Besides, ACPR rendered its support to the Indian Overseas Bank to establish information integrated touch screen computer systems at Theni and other locations. The volume of knowledge content in the form of voice mails and other documents developed by ACPR is very high and its services are much helpful in the livelihood support system of the poor in the villages.

As agreed, upon with COL the ACPR is regularly conducting a COC programme on Multimedia for Lifelong Learning and ODL which is helpful to many students to gain employment opportunities. Participation in academic programme is also demonstrated by a National Seminar jointly organized by the Department of Rural Development Science and the Department of Computer Science in 2019. A series of training was given for final year girl students on SHG formation with a focus empowering them and to transform the girls as successful entrepreneur. All these go to show that ACPR is an integral component of the college in promoting academic, research and extension programmes.





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