The AVANI Children’s Home Challenge

Of the estimated 85 million child laborers in India today, over 40,000 of them work in the Kolhapur district of Maharashtra. Many of these children have been sold or forced into hazardous occupations and commercial sex work.  Girls suffer the most. It is AVANI’s mission to work alongside children from the homeless, migrant and nomadic communities. […]

AVANI Eco-Dome Development Update

For the Holiday and New Year we have a composite of images & notes relating to the AVANI Domes progress… Just in time for the monsoon rains last September, the exterior of the main dome structure at the five acre site was completed. The rains actually assisted in the curing and hardening process of the mud […]

Anuradha Up Close and Personal – part-2

Continuing from part one, my interview with Anuradha Bhosale, Kolhapur India activist, social reformer and local hero, shares additional deep insights and reflections with us. LB: What was the worst story of exploitation that you can share with us? AB: The worst story of exploitation has occurred in my own life.   My mother-in-law and sister-in-law harassed me […]

Anuradha Bhosale on Castes, Religion and Her Sacred Mission

Anuradha Bhosale is a highly cherished hero to thousands of impoverished children and their families. Ms Bhosale is a renowned grassroots women’s rights and anti-child labor activist based in Kolhapur, India where more than 35,000 children are involved in daily labor for local industries. A former child-laborer herself at the age of six, she has […]

Two Leaves and a Bud (cont)

— Two leaves and a Bud (continued from part-1) Free English rendering : Arun Chavan Original Marathi by : Anuradha Bhosale Akshay’s granny is no longer working for a living. Age has finally caught up with her. For the past two years she is more or less tied to her hovel. I was able to persuade Saurabh […]

Two Leaves and a Bud

TWO LEAVES AND A BUD  AVANI office and school is at one end of the town, the southern end.  The main market, the shopping centres and the government offices are near about one another and are situated at its other end. My work often takes me into these sections. Our main stationery supplier, Neta Stores, the printing service […]

Beware of Pity Part 2

> Continued from Beware of Pity part-1  … We looked to her for the past few years as our showpiece, our success story. We have tried all possible alternatives but to no avail. She likes cooking. Therefore we thought of giving her training in hospitality or catering. but she did not show any interest in building […]

Beware of Pity

Original Marathi by: Anuradha Bhosale English rendering: Arun Chavan Come to think of it, the students of AVANI Residential School are the flotsam of the turbulent oceans of life. They are living embodiments of pain-filled stories and traumatic upheavals that are far beyond the tolerance thresholds of their tender souls. Having known the stories whose pathos […]

Pariah By Association Part 2

Original Marathi by: Anuradha Bhosale English rendering: Arun Chavan For a long time the nethermost deprived sections of society were not taken notice of by the economic planners of the country. Now we are in the XII five year plan period and the 66th year of independence. Yet the special development needs of these sections, which mainly comprise nomadic […]

Pariah By Association

Anuradha Bhosale continues with another story of life and the struggle to bring a better life to the nomadic children of Kolhapur India….  There was a bit of controversy about the prevalence of child labour in Kolhapur district. When I enquired of the concerned wing of the district administration about the incidence of child labour […]

Hoping Against Hope

In 2005 we received heavy showers within a short time span. Kolhapur’s main river, Panchganga and its major tributary, Bhogawati, burst their banks and flooded vast areas. That year is particularly memorable for me and my co-workers because our fledgeling residential school for deprived children near the river’s high floodline at Donawade village got severely damaged. We had at that time 23 […]

Anuradha Bhosale Receives Prestigious Award on National TV

KOLHAPUR, INDIA: Anuradha Bhosale was recently presented with a very prestigious award on national Indian television from the well respected Indian Supreme Court Justice, Mrudula Bhatkar. She brought several children from AVANI with her. The award was presented on Zee Marathi TV, one of the most popular Marathi channels and that has carved a niche […]

Miracles Rising In Kolhapur!

As GWEI president and founder, Dr. Arun Gandhi, has stated: “It is a sad commentary on our civilization that millions of children all over the world are denied basic amenities like, food, shelter, clothes and education.  If civilization is measured by the way it treats its children then we are far from being a civilized […]

AVANI’s Rescue of a Child Results in Freedom for Her Mother

Nagama’s name means “snake,” the name her father gave her when she was born because he was hoping for a son instead of a daughter. For the past three years, Nagama has been the top student at Avani school in Kolhapur, India, winning awards and receiving straight A’s on her report card. If she had […]

Summer Camp is a Special Time

Every year in the month of May, AVANI organizes summer camp for the children. The duration of the camp is 10 days. The objectives of this “camp” are to help children to develop a variety of different skills, as well as to make each of them aware of their own special talents, potentials and uniqueness. […]