ARUSHI | A BHOPAL FOUNDATION HELPING BLIND AND DISABLED
They say charity begins at home. But is charity all about helping someone in need of money? Ever since we come into this world, we are taught to learn and grow better every single day of our lives. We master our senses and thus thrive to compete with the outside world. We never do realize how lucky we are to be completely able to live. Everyone amidst us is not so lucky. The gracious god has some strong willed children too. They might need the help of the society, but they live a life we couldn’t ever endure.
Arushi is a Bhopal-based NGO working with and for the people with disabilities and issues that concern them. The objective of the organisation is to empower these people and capacitate them with the ability to work and compete with the outside world. The Disabled people are vulnerable to unashamed and understated oppression, harassment, abuse, and discrimination. Arushi works in the direction of helping the disadvantaged to improve as well as assess their abilities and make the right choices in life. Disabilities could be very different from person to person and hence, Arushi provides a wide range of training to its students which include the following:
- Speech therapy
- Mobility training
- Braille training
- Computer training
- Audio-verbal therapy
- Occupational training
There is a well-equipped computer training centre too for the disabled students. This centre provides training to visually disabled students with speech output and prepares them to work over digital equipment. Similarly, the organization has started a preschool for kids below the age of 5 so as to prepare them for primary school and its challenges. Arushi also runs a national helpline on disability. For any information on any type of disability, rights of the disabled, facilities available to them or any other query, CALL 18002334397 toll-free number from anywhere in India. It is funded by the state government of M.P.
THE INCEPTION OF ARUSHI-A RAY OF HOPE
Arushi-meaning “the first ray of sun”- strives to integrate people with disabilities into the mainstream of society.
In 1992, five like-minded friends came together and started working for issues concerned with Environmental Protection. The focus of their efforts shifted towards “people with visual impairment” and they started recording study material for them on audio cassettes. This was a genuinely felt need and eventually their empowerment and integration into the mainstream became the focus. This pulled a number of volunteers into its fold. Over the years the organization has evolved and has broad based its activities to address possible issues related with disability.
Several private organisations such as local SBI banks and LIC, Bhopal helped the NGO in maintaining resources such as school vans and computers. Even the Irish embassy reached out and helped the institution. At first, it only had 25-30 students which had to be found by conducting surveys in the local areas, whereas now Arushi is a helping hand to around 150 students.
THE PEOPLE BEHIND THE SUCCESS
Arushi has always had some special and truly devoted people with their service ever since the beginning. Mr. Anil Mudgal who was one of the primary members of Arushi is currently the head of operations at Arushi. He has been working with Arushi and has taken the organisation to a whole new level. He organizes various events to help the children grow socially and to inspire others to welcome these people with open arms. Mr. Sachin Paliwal has played an important role in facilitating a positive environment at the organisation. Being an Architect by profession he designed the new centre for Arushi totally devoted to helping the people with disabilities. The new building is completely designed to meet the needs of the disabled people. Sensitive pathways, compatible doors, ramps and lifts, wall signage and compatible toilets are some of the key features of the well designed and beautiful new centre. It is also used as a day boarding school.
The foundation also provides summer internship programs with a minimum tenure of 30 days. The internship consists of sensitivity and awareness program, interaction and management, recording and in some cases teaching the disabled. Students interested in joining the foundation for internships may visit the Bhopal centre located at 1, Shivaji Nagar, Near M.P.E.B. Bhopal. Arushi has always been lucky to have eager volunteers at their disposal. The Youth of Bhopal has always shown optimistic eagerness to help the students here at Arushi by all possible means.
Charity isn’t always about money. Sometimes your voice is enough. For all of us cannot be a contributor economically. God has made us whole and strong. We ought to help the ones who need us. Anyone willing to help can come here and record audios for textbooks for the children who cannot read. You can also just come and celebrate your personal occasions with the kids here. They all just seek some care and affection. You can just help by lending them your voice and that can be your first step towards charity itself.