CMED (Community Managed Empowerment and Development) programme was initiated in 2003 as a need based program for the most under-privileged communities living in the slums of Rajam in Srikakulam district of Andhra Pradesh. This programme aims at overall development of slum community of Rajam town through different developmental activities. The Foundation is working with Basket weavers, Dhobis, Toddy tappers, Barbers, Sanitation workers and Cleaners in 12 different slums of Rajam Nagara Panchayat. The activities include need-based education, health and sanitation initiatives and livelihood support activities like interest-free loans to Common Interest Groups (CIGs) etc.
Empowering the Differently-abled
GMRVF has taken up many initiatives to integrate disability with community services, such as facilitating special education for children with disabilities, aids and appliances and physiotherapy services, and facilitating access to entitlements etc. The Foundation also sensitizes the community towards the needs of Persons with Disabilities to help inclusion of the differently-abled into the mainstream.
Chasing bamboo raw material, push carts for ironing and iron boxes. They are regularly saving Rs.30/ to Rs.100/ per week besides paying their loan installments. This would enable them to become self-sufficient in not so distant future bringing them out of the debt traps of money lenders. The Foundation is currently supporting CIGs 6 CIGs comprising of 74 members.
The Night Schools help the adult women not only to read and write but also improve their health standards by creating awareness on personal hygiene and environmental sanitation.
About 950 children are regularly attending tuition centers in all the slums. All these children who were hitherto glued to TV sets are today spending their time in the tuition centers.
An exclusive tuition center is run for differently-abled.
Awareness programs on nutrition, ante-natal and post-natal care for pregnant women are conducted and nutritious food items like leafy vegetables, dal, eggs, fruits etc., are provided.
The Bala Badis prepare the children to schools and also help in instilling cleanliness and discipline among the slum children.
“Suvidha” Public toilets plugged the open defecation in many of the places in Rajam. This indirectly had a great impact on the living conditions of the slum dwellers. Currently, the Foundation is running 8 ‘Suvidha’ complexes in Rajam with about 2200 users per day.
The Foundation has provided 10 tri-cycles to Rajam Nagara Panchayat (RNP) for door to door garbage collection and supported for “Clean Rajam”.
There has been increased community participation also. For example, households in Medara Street have made innovative use of bamboo baskets as dust bins. This has ensured systematic garbage disposal in their area.
Celebration of National Festivals in the slums has increased the motivation levels among different segments of the communities. The hidden talents of the children are encouraged and they could perform well in various cultural events.
Meritorious and poor students studying in Govt. schools are selected through a talent test and provided free English Medium education in Varalakshmi St.Ann’s School under ‘Prajna’ scheme and currently 70 children are getting benefited like this.
For orphans who are infected/ affected by HIV, living itself is a great struggle. GMRVF channelizes the support extended by the colleagues of Vemagiri Power Generation Ltd, Rajahmundry and a few ex-servicemen to such children. The employees are providing education support to 113 AIDS orphans. Some children have been provided with bicycles. Further, 25 children are assisted with regular nutritious food support. Foundation facilitates regular Anti Retro Viral therapy and CD4 Count tests (Cluster of Differentiation 4-a glycoprotein whose count is measured to assess the immune system in human beings) for these children in collaboration with the Government Hospital, Rajahmundry. There is a remarkable improvement in the CD4 count of the children.