The world has shrunk as a result of globalization. Technological advancement in the field of communications and transport has brought people of the world closer. Cultural differences that alienated people from each other are disappearing fast as a result of improved communication. Yet, surprisingly there is a segment in our country that is leading an isolated life oblivious to the growth and development happening around them. The daily struggle for survival and failure to make their ends meet, takes so much out of this group of people that they are not able to mainstream in the activities of our society and lead a pitiable life of an outcast. Commercial sex workers and daily wage labourers working in risky industries like stone quarries constitute a large chunk of this segment. Pushed to the wall by inexorable destiny and circumstances, these poor people cannot come out of their miseries on their own. They require a helping hand from outside to pull them up.
Amrapali Utkarsh Sangha, a Nagpur based NGO supported by Smile Foundation, is providing helping hand to commercial sex workers and their children in Ganga Jamuna red light area, Nagpur and daily wage labourers working in stone quarries of Nagpur for last several years. The organisation under its initiative, Naveen Bhai Desai Residential School, provides education, healthcare, nutrition, boarding and lodging to children of sex workers and daily wage labourers.
Taking the development issue to local masses, Amrapali Utkarsh Sangha organized an event in the evening hours of 14th of August 2008 at MLA grounds in the Civil Lines area of Nagpur city, Maharsahtra. Around 100 eminent people of city from various walks of life including the top businessmen, local politicians, important government functionaries graced the occasion with their presence. Amrapali Utkarsh Sangha effectively used the platform to showcase the good work being done by them to the gathered audience through a documentary depicting the organization’s journey, successes and challenges. It was an emotionally stirring experience for the audience watching the documentary and can best be summed up in the words of one of the guests, Mr. Sunil N. Thombre, an advocate by profession, who commented, “Amrapali Utkarsh Sangha is doing a commendable job for often ignored but important segment of our society. Imagine operating a stone quarry without the support of labourers, these silent workers and their children must be helped to come up in life and it is the duty of us all present here to join hands with Sangha to enhance the scope of its work.” Adding further he said, “I also appreciate the support that Smile Foundation is providing to Amrapali Utkarsh Sangha.
India requires more such efforts to transform the fabric of our society”. An appeal for support was placed before the gathered audience after the documentary show. Stalls of artificial jewellery and stone artefacts made by the children of organisation’s initiative ‘Naveen Bhai Desai Residential School’ were put up to raise funds. The documentary show was followed by the dinner for the guests.
The funds raised through this event are being matched by Smile Foundation to strengthen the project, with an objective of achieving sustainability and scalability of the initiative.