Seva Mandir

Seva Mandir's mission is to make real the idea of society consisting of free and equal citizens who are able to come together and solve the problems that affect them in their particular contexts. The commitment is to work for a paradigm of development and governance that is democratic and polyarchic. Seva Mandir seeks to institutionalise the idea that development and governance is not only to be left to the State and its formal bodies like the legislature and the bureaucracy, but that citizens and their associations should engage separately and jointly with the State. The mission briefly, is to construct the conditions in which citizens of plural backgrounds and perspectives can come tog...
Dec 15, 2016

Sugna: Inspiration for all

Confident Sugna
Confident Sugna

We hope you are looking forward to your holiday season. You have been adding to our happiness every year with your support and faith, we would like to extend our gratitude to you for your most bighearted and regular donations each year.

As you know with your support we run 159 rural schools reaching out to more than 6,000 children every year for their education. Seva Mandir started running Shiksha Kendras (formerly known as Non Formal Education Centres/ rural bridge schools) in 1970s with 10 schools. The aim of running Shiksha Kendras is to ensure quality education to tribal children of 6-14 years old in remote rural areas of Udaipur District who have no access to education for social or economic reasons. Most of our Rural Schools are located in impoverished and remotest villages where Government schools are either located very far or not serviceable. I really wish that everyone could see with his own eyes the deep-rooted change that Seva Mandir is making in these remote areas, how many efforts had been put into the project, and therefore sustain these amazing schools and also the detailing and warmth they are taught and mentored.

We are privileged to experience moving stories of women like Sugna. In the year 1999, Sugna a girl child resident of Magra village is one of the children who have been touched by Seva Mandir who took admission in a non-formal school run by Seva Mandir. She passed out from Seva Mandir’s school in the year 2003 and joined government school to further continue her education and went on to complete class 12th. Some people may think that neither children nor parents from poor economic backgrounds have interest in schooling them but Sugana was an exception also because she had wings in the form of Seva Mandir School. Sugna Graduated in Arts and is pursuing Teachers Training Program currently, she is teaching at a Primary School in her own village. Sugna feels proud to be part of Seva Mandir’s School. Sugana’s achievement has lifted confidence of other children. Sugana wants to teach children not just the subject but also teach and train children to dream for a bright future. She also wishes to pursue Bachelors of education degree. The children can perform well if the quality of Education is better, if access to Education is easy for them. Sugana’s achievement has lifted confidence of other children. Can we have more Sugna’s in the village?

Thanks once again for your valuable donation and I look forward to your continued support in future too. Your faith and untiring support is very critical to us

Regards

Atul Lekhra and Seva Mandir Team

Follow us on www.facebook.com/sevamandir 

Links:

Nov 23, 2016

Living with Dignity

Many women who leave an abusive household lack support from their family or community. A short stay home then provides women and girls a safe place to live, and offers counseling and legal advice. It is an integral component of Seva Mandir’s strategy to deal with violence against women and is therefore a very important intervention.

Rekha (name changed) is one among the many women who are supported by Seva Mandir. She was born in Chittorgarh in 1993. She has a master’s degree in political science. After falling in love with Ramesh, she eloped with him on the 5th of March, 2016. After getting married, they returned to his home. That is where problems began. Because she belonged to a different caste, his family ostracized her. Particularly, his sister, Geeta, was not happy about their marriage. She would constantly use derogatory language with Rekha. If they were ever together in a room, her sister would accuse her of trapping Ramesh. Her sister would additionally try creating problems between Rekha and Ramesh. She would feed Ramesh false information about Rekha having affairs, and telling him that Rekha would beat her. This created tension in their marriage. Rekha was very unhappy and emotionally distraught, because she would always be spoken to in a condescending manner, from morning until night.

Then finally, one day Geeta forced Ramesh to file for divorce. She told her brother that if he didn’t sign the papers, she would kill herself; he needed to choose between his sister and his wife. He signed the papers. Therefore, Rekha was left homeless. Her family wouldn’t take her back in because she left home without their approval.

This represents a larger issue that reoccurs often. Inter-caste love marriages are common amongst the women who come, stay at the Short Stay Home. It is viewed as a societal problem, which often results in these women getting kicked out of their home, and not being able to return to their childhood home.

Therefore, these ladies seek shelter through Seva Mandir at the Short Stay Home. Rekha has now been staying at the Short Stay Home for 2 months. With the help and guidance of Seva Mandir, she is now in the process of studying to take an exam for a job in the police force, which has always been her dream. With the support of the staff members at the Short Stay Home, she has been able to create the dream, of getting a job and home of her own. At the Short Stay Home, she is provided with shelter, food, counseling, and education guidance.

Like Rekha, in the past twelve years, many women were given shelter along with their children. Due to prolonged harassment and violence, most women coming to the Short Stay Home are depressed, hence various activities are undertaken to help them come out of this. Also they are connected to economic activities so that they can lead a respectable life later.

We thank you for your continuous support in helping women like Rekha to restart their lives in a dignified way.

Regards

Atul Lekhra and Seva Mandir Team

Follow us on: www.facebook.com/sevamandir  

Links:

Oct 28, 2016

We could, We can and We will be able to!

Today I want to share with you a wonderful story about Shishvi village that just completed self-dependency project; a place forty kilometers away from Udaipur in Rajasthan. The earning source for them was agriculture, animal husbandry and natural resources and youth looked up to Udaipur for making a living. We at Sevamandir walked hand in hand with the village families and seen it evolve in 15 years. In December 2012 a project on ‘A step towards empowerment of girls and women of Shishvi village’ was started. The target group was 1500 people. In January 2014 about 70 women participated in training module to learn how to prepare good quality soaps and detergents as an income-generating activity and the entire technical and safety training was provided by Seva Mandir. Seva Mandir Self Help Groups (SHGs) were formed in the village and we through Women Economic Empowerment brought women together in saving and credit activities, eventually providing them with an opportunity to access external finances. In FY 2015-16, the annual production of detergent was 1200 Kgs yielding an annual turnover of Rs.60,000 ($900 approx.). Each woman involved with the activity, was paid Rs.1,500 ($23 approx.) out of the profits accrued after keeping 30% of the surplus in reserves and ploughing back the amount for the next business cycle. With projects like these, they could support a variety of productive activities and fulfill the immediate needs of their families and also start a small venture based on skill and thus being self dependant.

The entire process gave them a feeling of accomplishment and hopeful of at least earning some money and also in the process learning a new skill. The sample was sent for quality audits to SIMA Labs India and the happiness of villagers knew no bounds to hear that the detergent is of good texture and mild and thus will not harm clothesor hands and soil. Shishvi village is now being approached by nearby villages to learn the state of art so as to implement it in their village. The next challenge is to form a brand.It all happened because you made it happen and are an integral part of this beautiful journey. The entire group is now highly motivated. Since there is a high daily demand for detergent, it would also cover a good market.

Our capacity to create happiness is infinite. The challenges lie in bringing forth our greatest possible selves in the face of daily reality. This continual progression on self-renewal and transformation is the journey of Shishvi villagers. Thank you for your dedicated efforts to support. Please accept our deepest appreciation for all that you do. The program clearly aims to bring about social as well as economic self-reliance for both individuals and communities at the grassroots and ensure that the effects achieved through the program are long-term and sustainable.That is what we call empowerment through co-creation.

We would also like to wish you and your family a very HAPPY DIWALI.

Thank you

Regards

Atul Lekhra and Seva Mandir Team

Follow us on www.facebook.com/sevamandir

Links:

 
   

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