A very dear friend of mine, Laia, recently visited India and got in touch with the organisation Mumbai Smiles. She told me she was impressed by their work and would like to help them out. From Europe the easiest way to help them is to get them exposure. I offered my blog for that, so from now one you can expect articles on Mumbai Smiles and their work regularly.
Who they are:
Mumbai Smiles is a non profit organisation founded by a Spanish journalist, Jaume Sanllorente in the year 2005. He was on vacation to Mumbai which happened to be a life changing experience for him. He started what he calls a “peaceful struggle against poverty”, a struggle that has today been taken up by a growing team of dedicated professionals. It engages with thousands of people with multiple projects focused on Education, Health and Livelihood.
Mumbai Smiles operates through their projects in and around the slums of Andheri East area, Mumbai. Mumbai Smiles believes in delivering quality services to its beneficiaries and hence has strategically chosen to work in a specified area for holistic development of the community.
Their target population is the children, women and youths in the slum communities of the operational area. Their projects on education, health and livelihood are interlinked with each other and aligned with the MDG goals to contribute largely in the overall socio- economic development of the area.
What they do:
This integrated program aims to end poverty and the violation of the most fundamental human rights in the poorest communities in Bombay.
Their education program includes:
- Balwadi project focused on Cultivating a Healthy Lifestyle through Education to children in below 6 years of age.
- Future Smiles project focused on adolescent youths above 14 years of age providing financial support to underprivileged youths to continue their education and build a bright future.
- Girl Child Education project focused on adolescent girls by providing them scholarship support to continue their education thus alleviating the gender disparities existing in society and giving equal opportunity to girls to continue their education.
Their health program includes:
- HOPE project which gives psychosocial and financial support to children with cancer.
- Eye check up and health camps.
Their Livelihood project includes:
SEED Project: This project on vocational training rolled out in the year 2012. It was initiated with the vision to connect with ongoing education programs and provide a link to those left out youths who were not covered under the Future Smiles project. Thus it aims to provide marketable tangible skills to underprivileged youth in the age group of 18 – 29 years and women above the age group of 29 years providing them meaningful employment to lead a dignified life. The larger objective of the project is to promote gender equality by empowering women financially. Mumbai Smiles believes that a woman is a foundation to a healthy society and plays a central role to development as a whole.
Those interested in visiting Mumbai Smiles Projects can do so by simply writing them on: firstname.lastname@example.org, and they will organise a one day visit for you to all their projects.
You can also visit their Blog: www.mumbaismiles.org to learn more about them.