SHAMA, Inc. A nonprofit 501(c)3 organization
Jagdish Chander
2460 Crescent Court, Plover WI 54467  (715) 341-1538
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Mhaskal Village street
Mhaskal Village street

Mhaskal Village

Background || Income generation || School and Homes || Health

National award to woman from Mhaskal village, 2007

Mhaskal is two hours north of Mumbai, about 40 kilometers. The village was absolutely undeveloped, with practically no amenities at all. A professor of geography at PN Doshi College, Ashok Salve, discovered the dire conditions under which people lived in the village and decided to do what he could to help them.  He brought the village's conditions to the attention of the government and contacted the SPRJ Kanyashala Trust. The Trust worked with the villagers to develop a five-year plan.

Short-term goals were to clean up their environment; provide them with cooking fuel, toilets, and health facilities; give midday meals to children; literacy training for adults; and the means for adults to generate income from various sources.

Long-term goals are to help them understand the importance of keeping their environment clean, to give them awareness of their strengths and how to use those strengths to generate income, and to encourage them to shoulder responsibility for their future.

Ashok Salve volunteers his time to oversee all the programs and development in Mhaskal village. How he learned of this village's needs, brought it to the attention of the government, and got it under the care of the Trust can be found at this link.

Pat Reckrey (of Scandinavia, WI) visited in 2005. She said:

Mhaskal Village sceneThe Mhaskal Village Project overwhelmed me. In this remote area...tribal people and villagers eke out a living. The conditions are extreme by any standard, but again, SHAMA, Inc. concern and money has made a big difference in quality of life....There are new composting toilets because SHAMA interest in the community was a catalyst for government funds that helped build them. Children have been given health exams from donated services of doctors who wanted  to be part of the positive direction of Mhaskal, and PN Doshi College students are doing mentoring with Village children and adults.

Mhaskal has a community kitchen center, sponsored by HPCL, an Indian petroleum company. The tribal people used wood from the nearby forest for cooking, not only requiring a good deal of effort daily to gather the wood, but also deforesting the fragile ecology of Titwala. To counter this problem, this community kitchen has a gas connection that can be used by all villagers.

This center also provides the midday meal for students sponsored by the SHAMA, Inc. Kids program, and nutritious food for pregnant women. These women are also given training in prenatal and postnatal health care.

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Site of future medical center
The 2003 site of the future medical center

Community Kitchen Center
The community kitchen center

Getting water from well

Women's toilet
Women's toilet, built as
result of 2004 village meeting

Compost pit for toilets
Compost pit for fertilizer

SHAMA, Inc.'s work in Mhaskal has served as a catalyst to other people and agencies in India who are contributing to the future welfare of the village.

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