Seven hundred villagers attended SevaChild’s second annual Mayakund village humanitarian event in the mountainous region of Uttarakhand last October, where more than 300 children received vitamin A micronutrients and albendazole (an anti-parasitic agent) administered by one of SevaChild’s field partners in the region, the Rural Development Institute (RDI).Another one of SevaChild’s vitamin A distribution partners, the Divine Shakti Foundation, set up a medical camp where the children and adults of Mayakund village were treated for mild ailments and given health check-ups; more serious medical issues were diagnosed for further action elsewhere. All of the participating families received a hearty meal provided by the Divine Shakti Foundation, and young ladies from the Him Jyoti School for orphan girls, along with Parmath Niketan dancers sporting giant puppet-heads, performed original skits and songs about health and hygiene to instruct – as well as entertain – the local villagers. SevaChild’s President, Rick Carlton, was a prominent participant.
We have just been informed that DHFL, one of India’s leading housing finance and loan companies, has approved a grant to fund SevaChild in the management of a vitamin A and albendazole administration program that will serve an additional 30,000 children living in the rural Palghar district of Maharashtra.The agreement entails SevaChild setting up training camps through which approximately 2000 teachers, from the 990 preschools attended by the 30,000 children in question, will be trained in the proper administration of vitamin A and albendazole.
In keeping with an Indian law requiring corporate entities to ‘give back’ to the society at large, DHFL has chosen to partner with SevaChild in an effort to ensure funds are available to support the management of this program that will protect children at risk of VADD. The grant is for five years, with the option to renew in 2022.
Look for more news about this matter as the project unfolds!
SevaChild has joined forces with Karuna Trust, one of India’s most well known, respected and productive humanitarian organizations, in an effort to streamline management of our nationwide and ever-growing vitamin A administration program in India.How does Karuna Trust’s mission intersect with that of SevaChild? The Trust’s founder, Hanumappa Sudarshan, M.D., is a professional associate and personal friend of SevaChild’s founder, Rick Carlton. In the international relief community, Dr. Sudarshan is somewhat of a legend. Among the numerous accolades he has received are the Right Livelihood Award (an international recognition of “those offering practical and exemplary answers to the most urgent challenges facing us today”), and the Mother Theresa Award for social justice.
Karuna Trust was created in 1986 as a solution to the high incidence of leprosy in Yelandur Taluk, an area of the Chamarajanagar district in the southern portion of India’s Karnataka State. Since its nascence, the Trust has blossomed and expanded; its aegis now includes relief work in health, education, livelihood and advocacy in favor of the most impoverished populations throughout Karnataka and Arunachal Pradesh.Karuna Trust will now serve as SevaChild’s managing director, overseeing SevaChild’s network of more than 2,000 organizations involved in the latter’s vitamin A distribution program. With its experience operating 72 primary health centres (PHC) in every district of both Arunachal Pradesh and Karnataka States, as well as its philosophy of promoting public-private partnership with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) for the purpose of enhancing primary health care, Karuna Trust is uniquely qualified to support SevaChild’s efforts towards protecting every child in India from vitamin A deficiency disorder. In addition, the Trust’s involvement in the administration of SevaChild’s project will enable us to reach even more children in dire need of vitamin A supplementation. With its motto of “Reaching the Unreached,” Karuna Trust’s goals and ideals are very much in synchronicity with those of SevaChild. We eagerly anticipate an extremely fruitful and successful relationship with this most lauded of Indian public charitable trusts!
In concert with Sivana Spirit and eight other companies, SevaChild sponsored a sweepstakes this month to give away a 7-day yoga retreat in Northern India that will include a day of seva (humanitarian service) with SevaChild.The winners will accompany SevaChild’s founder and managing director, Rick Carlton, to Mayakund, the largest slum in Rishikesh. There they will help facilitate a vitamin A supplementation event, as mothers bring their children to receive disease-preventing and life-sustaining micronutrients administered by SevaChild volunteers. The contest winners will have the chance to help out as local slum inhabitants are given medical exams by health professionals from the Rural Development Institute, and they will also have the opportunity to lend a hand to the Divine Shakti Foundation — which will be preparing and serving meals to over 700 Mayakund villagers. Our ‘seva experience’ participants will join in the fun as Parmarth Niketan performs a giant puppet-head show offering lighthearted entertainment for the children and parents at Mayakund slum.