Smile works for children, their welfare, and their holistic development. Understandably, child education and health assumes top priority in Smile’s scheme of things. This child-centric focus remains unaffected even if Smile undertakes emergency relief and rehabilitation work, as it always undertakes, following natural disaster- be it Tsunami catastrophe, or Mumbai flood caused by uninterrupted incessant rain in July, 2005.
Smile responded to the recent flood havoc in Mumbai and surrounding districts- affecting thousands of families, destroying their belongings and completely upsetting their lives and daily routine. While governmental actions and relief measures were pressed into action, non-governmental, non-profit organizations did not lag behind in coming forward to aid of the suffering milieu.
Smile- Mumbai decided to reach out to the people, though most affected yet least noticed and supported. Smile therefore focused on area(s) of Kalyan and Badlapur for relief operations- group of vulnerable children being the target. Smile decided to support these children’s education by providing educational resources. To be able to reach out in an area where Smile did not have any physical presence or it’s partner, it entered into partnership and collaborated with Aasara Child line, a local NGO at Kalyan. Aasara, as such, had been receiving requests for help from various schools in the area.
With the help of Aasara Child line, in a short span, Smile – Mumbai identified 284 school children from lower income group who had lost their books, uniforms, bags etc in flood. While sourcing these material, it was realized that while many donors/ other agencies have been willing to provide/ providing books & bags; but none coming forward to provide ‘uniforms’ to these children, who as such had nothing much to dress. May be it was due to the higher
expenses ( at least 2 sets of uniforms for each child) as well as the operational difficulties( providing uniforms suiting to the size of individual child).Hence Smile took up the responsibility. Uniforms were distributed on 30thAugust 2005 to 284 students from 3 schools- children of different age-groups studying in different classes ranging from one to seven.
These schools are Shahad Vibhag High school at Shahad, Shree Krishna Khamkar Marathi Vidyalaya and Chandrashekhar Memorial School, both in Badlapur.