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About Us

MASARD Welfare Society came into being in 1986 as the culmination of a long cherished dream of Dr J.L. Fernandes. Dr Fernandes is an accomplished social activist who together with other like-minded academics and professionals commissioned MASARD as a movement to work towards eradicating poverty in Bangalore ís urban slums and surrounding rural villages.

MASARDís vision is to build a society devoid of all forms of disparities where communities are capable of sustaining themselves without poverty, disease or hunger. MASARD pursues this vision in harmony with the environment. MASARD aims to promote economic independence and social dignity through strategic participatory planning to ensure that all projects are implemented effectively and have minimal impact on the environment.

MASARD has made a significant contribution to the lives of many people in the states of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu and is presently working to empower the poorest of the poor in 10 urban slums and 80 rural villages.

Bangalore city has an estimated 800 slums that grew up following an influx of small-scale farmers and landless agricultural labourers into the growing city. The number of children under 15 residing in the slums is approximately 46 percent. Each family has an average of five children. Many parents are unable to afford education for their children and thus many children are forced into the labour market.

MASARDís administrative base is centrally located in Bangalore . Its field bases comprise welfare centers, training centers and community halls in Egipura, Rupenagrahara and Koramangala in Bangalore city, Nelamangala and in Mysore . MASARD is also running an orphanage in Egipura and has recently established a temporary orphanage in Tamil Nadu to care for children orphaned by the tsunami that hit coastal areas of India in December 2004.

Some of MASARDís key achievements to date include:

  • Residential care of 30 orphaned children at Ashanilaya orphanage in Egipura.
  • Community based care of 350 children living with bereaved single parents in slum areas.
  • Establishment of 480 Biogas plants.
  • Installation of 25 home lighting systems and 100 solar lighting systems
  • Distribution of 460 solar lanterns to street vendors and women in rural villages
  • Establishment of microcredit programmes that have enabled 173 women to generate income through small enterprises.
  • Rehabilitation of 2315 street children
  • Care for 56 destitute elderly women.
  • Rehabilitation of 29 children of AIDS afflicted parents
  • Organisation of 57 AIDS awareness camps.
  • Plantation of 6000 saplings
  • Educational assistance for 1613 slum children.