BIS #6353 Don Bosco Lonavla 'road & water' village outreach

by Father Blany Pinto for BISMumbai

Don Bosco Lonavla [DBL] village outreach for the adivasi people in the last academic year [2020-21], focussed on the acquiring of 'caste certificates' in Vaksai [46 families], Karunduli [35 families] and Mundhavare [25 families]. Through the concerted efforts of the DBLsocial outreach saff - Sonali and Ravi Shelke, with the local village coordinators, the 'caste certificates' were obtained and distributed by the MLA staff on 20 October 2020, in the presence of the Sarpanch, and the Gram Panchayat.

The certificates obtained, the empowered villagers began self-educating, with enhanced awareness of various government schemes. Through periodic and constant contact, the DBL social outreach staff provided awareness of the benefits of acquiring the certificates and the possibility of making their voices heard in the Panchayat meeting to access the Government schemes for adivasis.

The fruit of empowered-villagers, manifested itself when the request for a cemented road and water tank, was granted. Earlier, unaware of their rights, they had to put up with unmotorable dirt-roads, walking miles in the summer heat to obtain water. Today, the 03 villages have proper road-access, with the construction of the water tank, underway.

The sheer determination of the villagers, the committed effort of the social outreach staff and the generosity of donors who help to defray incurred expenses, has ensured the gradual transformation, enabling dignified living.