If our leprosy survivors and social rejects who are now socially independent and live off the land, have set world standards for rehabilitation and coordinated some of India’s most daring and prominent ecological and social programs, we can humbly say our Mission of Winning Smiles is creating wonders.
‘Anandwan’ is the realization of Baba &Sadhana Tai Amte’s grand dream. But the perception that ‘Anandwan means Leprosy relief work’ is deeply rooted in the society. In reality, the cause has evolved much beyond leprosy, accommodating the other underprivileged sections of the society like the visually challenged, the hearing impaired, the orthopedically challenged, the unemployed, marginalized farmers, tribal populace. Anandwan has developed itself into a unique model where all its residents are provided with an opportunity to live a healthy, meaningful and dignified life.
Conducting several successful experiments in the fields like healthcare, education, agriculture, water resource management, environment, livelihood promotion, low-cost housing, Anandwan has emerged by leaps and bounds. The most important fact being that this wonderwork could be possible because of the tireless efforts of the socially challenged. Anandwan’s core belief has always been to give marginalized individuals a “Chance” and not just “Charity” by enabling them to engage in economically productive activities thereby regaining their lost sense of dignity.
Spread on 600+ Acres, Anandwan houses a population of over 2000 people and has diverse kinds of activities including hospitals, homes for the aged, workshop for assistive devices, modern agriculture and agro-industries, productive units, formal academic institutions, special schools, vocational training centres etc. All of these are efficiently run by the inhabitants of Anandwan, most of them having some form of physical disability. The Anandwan community provides a working example of shared struggle to seek joy through creativity. The exclusivity of Anandwan lies in the system where except a select few trained professionals; the organization relies extensively on ‘homegrown’ talent and expertise in various functions including management, accountancy, architecture, engineering and agriculture. The key of self-management lies in the non-bureaucratic, self-governing culture that pervades Anandwan, where people work with a motivation, born out of a sense of belonging to a shared community. Today, Anandwan is not just a happy cooperative village, but beyond that, it’s a living example of integrated rural development.
Know more about Anandwan @ http://www.anandwan.in