Mangalore, Sept 23: The ashram of world-renowned spiritual leader and humanitarian Sri Mata Amritanandamayi Devi (Amma) announced two massive charitable projects, a 50-crore relief-and-rehabilitation project in the flood-ravaged state of Uttarakhand and a programme to adopt 101 villages throughout India.
“In Uttarakhand, the Mata Amritanandamayi Math [MAM] will build approximately 500 houses destroyed by the disaster,” said MAM‟s vice-chairman Swami Amritaswarupananda. “These will be the totality of homes destroyed in 42 selected villages in the districts of Rudraprayag and Uttarkashi.”
MAM would not only be rebuilding houses in Uttarakhand, but would also be providing scholarships to poor children, providing pension to widows and handicapped people, building an orphanage/care-home for children who no longer have a proper care structure in place, and helping to empower women by assisting them to set up home-based SHG businesses.
MAM has already built 45,000 houses in 75 locations throughout India as part of its ongoing Amrita Kuteeram housing project and provided 41,000 scholarships to impoverished children, with a target of providing the same to 100,000 children. In addition, it has relocated 1,600 families from slums into new apartments and also given absolutely free medical care to 26 lakh people since 1998. In India, it feeds 10 million poor people annually, and Amma‟s devotee-organizations outside of India annually feed 100,000 outside the country, including 75,000 in the US via soup kitchens.
Expanding on the village-adoptions‟ tablet-based tutoring programme, Raghu Raman, the director of Amrita University‟s Centre for Research in Advanced Technologies for Education (CREATE), explained that Amrita has developed a unique tablet-based multimedia learning programme.
Another Amrita project announced was a Portable Electronic Health Record stored in a pen drive, designed to make each person in control of his health record. “This is important especially for India because the concept of empowering its citizens with their own health data
During the Amrutha Mahotsav celebration there will be a two-day summit of renowned scientists, social-leaders, academicians, entrepreneurs and administrators titled “Our World, Our Villages: What Can We Offer” aimed at uplifting India‟s rural village communities.
The summit will be inaugurated by Dr. A.P.J. Abdulam Kalam, former president of India, and participants will include Dr. M.S. Swaminathan, Dr. Kasturi Rangan and Nobel Laureate Dr. Lee Heartwell.