Our Focused People
Children of Cornerstone Orphanage
Childhood is very important and precious for the development and well being of a human person. Unfortunately childhood is not the same for every child. In our survey in the villages around DKSHA, we found that there were an alarming number of orphan, semi orphan and neglected children living in our service villages. Many orphan children struggle to survive. DKSHA started Cornerstone orphanage in the year 2004 with the help and support given by some friends in the local area. As said in the Bible the stone, which is rejected, has become the cornerstone of the building. In the same way the orphan children who are neglected by the society are given care and support, “as these Children of God are going be the Cornerstone of the Society” in the future.
83 children are currently living at the Cornerstone Orphanage. There are 53 are boys and 30 girls being housed in beautiful, healthy homes. All children of our orphanage visit 5 different schools in the vicinity of 10 kilometres and receive academic education. The children are happy well adjusted and thriving in their community. The facilities and programs and more importantly the values taught and modeled are truly those in which these children and survive, thrive and feel loved and respected by those around them. Bright future awaits these youngsters.
Child labourers and drop out children
Arduous efforts have been made in the last four decades for Universalization of Elementary Education and to fulfill the mandate of the Indian Constitution. The “National Policy on Education” 1986 and 1992 also gave top priority to the achievement of Universal Elementary Education. Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA – Education for all) is an attempt to improve capabilities of all children through provision of community owned quality education in a mission mode. The broad aim of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan is to provide useful and relevant elementary education to all children in the 6 to 14 age group to bridge social, regional and gender gaps, with the active participation of the community in the management of schools. DKSHA has been partnering with the Government efforts to mainstream children who are out of schools. There are 30 children availing of SSA program with the help of DKSHA.
Potential drop outs among School going children in the villages
Education in the developing countries is becoming a serious concern. Child labour needs to be tackled by allowing or creating a learning environment for children. DKSHA provides supplementary education for the school going children and dropouts. As a result of our intervention the number of children attending schools have increased. The number of dropouts has come down. There are nearly 30 tuition centers in 30 villages with more then 1440 children attending our centers. The children spend nearly 3 hours in the evening and learn their homework. The teacher in charge of the center clarifies the doubts raised by the students and help them in understanding the content of various lessons. Besides this the children are also taught singing, dancing, storytelling and other skills.
DKSHA is also committed for the well being of unemployed young girls. St.Joseph’s Tailoring school provides training skills to 15 young girls in tailoring. There are two batches of students every year. The young girls are identified by the women self help groups to under go a special training in Tailoring. After the training, the girls start their own tailoring shops and earn a living. We are also exploring various possibilities of initiating a garments manufacturing and Training unit in order to give job opportunity to more young women. A full time tailoring instructor and a part time master tailor is also involved in the teaching of the tailoring skill.
Women form 50% of our human society. Women shoulder nearly 75% of the physical, emotional and psychological stress of the family and the community at large but they enjoy privileges less than 50%. Though they are termed as weaker sex of fair sex, they form enormous labour force to any society. Fair sex is often treated as roughly as possible. They struggle for their rights both in the families and in the society. Empowerment process has to be focused on women so that the overall well being of the society is taken care. DKSHA has taken women development as one of the prime focus in order to empower the women in the economic, Social, Cultural and educational aspects. The self-help groups (SHG’s) are the micro units at the village level, which gain or collect strength in the process of women empowerment. DKSHA has organized 150 SHG’s in 65 villages of Manapparai,Vaiyampatty and Marungapuri pachayat unions of Tiruchirapalli District, 1500 women are fully involved in savings and credit program.
Comprehensive approach to deal with the issue of environment DKSHA has initiated Farmers club in the village having both men and women as members. The main focus in sustainable agriculture using organic methods of cultivation Trainings and inputs will be given to the club members. The people also receive a small loan facility to practice what they have learnt. DKSHA with close association of the department of forest and agriculture would promote tree plantation under the social forestry program. Saplings are supplied to the people and they take care of the plants in individual households and in common places. The people are also encouraged to avail Government schemes in desiltation of the ponds. Rain harvesting technique is also being taught to conserve water and protect the soil erosion in order to sustain the agriculture. The farmers clubs are the core committee in each village which will concentrate on environment related issues that affect the village and also to work towards organic farming in order to attain sustainable Agriculture for maximum benefits. The banks will also encourage the farmers to do organic farming by extending medium term credit facilities.
Community as a whole in health and development program
DKSHA believes in community health and development. Only a healthy community will respond to the challenges of the society. DKSHA has introduced health education to all the members of SHG’s and to the student community. It conducts health camp in the villages and alternative medicine like home remedies, herbal medicines etc.