I had a phone interview with Dariyav Singh of Kishoni on August 21, 2019 about his seven-year journey with ShantiSeva’s help. When I called him, he was very happy and full of energy and his life is very comfortable. Dariyav Singh run a small Kirana (grocery) shop. He told me that he has gotten three more loans, one in May 2015 for an amount of Rs. 10,000 ($160), a second loan on July 2016 for Rs. 10,000 ($160) and a third loan on January 2018 for Rs. 10,000 ($160). He has paid all the loans promptly in time. His sales have tripled from Rs. 10,000 per month to Rs. 30,000 per month. I asked if he needed more money, he says “first I will pay this loan than I will ask for another loan.”
ShantiSeva has given a loan of Rs. 15,000 (USD$230) on February 2014 to increase his business. Now after a five-year journey, Chetan has increased his daily income to Rs. 300 per day an increase of 300%. Rekha Bai (Chetan’s wife) has also started stitching clothes of the villagers to earn some extra money. Chetan is planning to buy a motorized tri-cycle so he can travel to other villages to increase his sales.
We published a blog about Aruna Bai the wife of Kaptan Singh in October 2018. In a short span of six months Aruna Bai has doubled her business from Rs. 3000 ($50) per month to Rs. 6000 ($100). After her success she asked for a micro loan for her sister-in-law to start a sewing business. Kaptan Sing’s elder brother Dhiraj Singh also moved to Indore for a better life. He works as a driver for private company with salary of Rs. 15,000 ($250) per month. ShantiSeva has given a micro loan to Hema Lata Bai for Rs. 20,000 ($335) to buy a sewing machine to start the business with her sister-in-law. ShantiSeva hope she will do as good as her sister-in-law has done.
Pooja did not like the big city life. She is used to the open space of her large house and not so much of the busy city life. She did not want to bring up her children in the city environment. She decided to move back to her village Padana near Shujalpur. I have visited her new location in Dec 2018. Her new location is much bigger to accommodate eight sewing machines. The couple is working very hard to grow their business. Pooja Bai has bought four more sewing machines and employing four local women to grow her business. She had paid her loan in a short six-month time. I was very impressed with her progress. She has increased her income from Rs. 10,000 to Rs. 30,000 per month in a very short one-year timeframe. She is thinking to buy a van to deliver readymade jeans and to get raw materials from Indore.
Kaptan Singh was brought up in a joint family of three brothers in a small village called Ugah. They have an ancestral farm, where all three brothers work on it and earn a small amount of money which is just sufficient for their meager living. In 2010, Kaptan Singh decided to move to a big city like Indore with his wife Aruna Bai for a better life and support his brothers in the village. Kaptan work very hard and established a successful landscaping business. I had visited his house in March 2018 and meet his wife Aruna Bai.
I asked Aruna Bai can you help your husband in increasing their household income while staying at home. She then asked me for ideas. Then I asked if she could stitch clothes for her neighbors and earn extra money that way. Her answer was yes, I can do it! But she said she would need money to buy a sewing machine and get some basic training. ShantiSeva gave her a micro loan of Rs. 20,000 ($300) to buy a sewing machine and start her home business in July 2018. Aruna Bai is doing a very good business of stitching garments for other people. Her income has increased from nothing to over Rs. 3000 ($50) per month in just three months.
Aruna Bai In her own words:
I will double my business to Rs. 6000 ($100) per month in next six months
Author: Rajneesh Jain. Shujalpur, Madhya Pradesh
In the autumn of 2016, ShantiSeva helped Gourav Saxena with a loan of Rs 25,000 ($500) to set up an office center in Shujalpur. Gourav had survived a major brain operation in 2015. Although his family helped him to undergo that fatal and expensive surgery his elder brother, an assistant to a local lawmaker, wanted his brother to live a better and normal life. He met Ravi Jain of ShantiSeva and sought his help to start an office center for his brother.
Now after two years of hard work to promote his business, Gourav is living a good life. He has started an online kiosk from his own house. When I met him at his store he was teaching his three-year-old nephew some rhymes. He is still single but someday wants to get married and have his own family. He credits Mr. Ravi Jain and ShantiSeva for his financial independence.
While I was in India this past spring, I visited Kalangarai and was amazed at what a difference our 2017 donations made in the lives of the families of the widowed women who participate in Kalangarai programs. With our two fund-raising appeals in 2017 (Mother’s Day and End-of-the-Year Appeal), Friends of Kalangarai enabled 69 students to attend school. We raised $2,388 (161,235 INR) which provided scholarships ranging from $15 (1000 INR) to $75 (5000 INR).
Ten students received scholarships to attend St. Joseph’s Community College, 3 students received scholarships to nursing school, and 56 students received scholarships to various colleges (vocational diploma, Bachelor’s’ degrees, or Masters of Engineering) and secondary schools (10-12 grades).
Students are starting school in July and need our support. Please consider making a donation to the Friends of Kalangarai to support the children’s education. Your contribution can be sent to the following address:
Friends of Kalangarai
P.O. Box 5366
Louisville, KY 40255
Also, while I was at Kalangarai, I was introduced to a new program that Kalangarai has launched. It is called WISE (Women in Innovative Social Entrepreneurship). These women pool their saving and leased a small farm. They installed an irrigation system and have been able to make a profit. Thay have harvested rice, bajra, and jowar. I think this WISE program can be introduced in ShantiSeva work area.
Karen Kayser, PhD, MSW
President, Friends of Kalangarai
Friends of Kalangarai is a U.S.A. non-profit that supports the programs of Kalangarai through fund-raising, education, and research. We are a 501(c)3 charitable organization.
Author: Rajneesh Jain
Tapka Basantpur is a village of 700 residents. I had visited the village with Ravi Jain to see the progress after one year, to how Seema Bai was doing. Seema Bai of this village was introduced to ShantiSeva by Papita Bai of Jhadla village. ShantSeva had granted a loan of Rs. 10,000 ($150) last year to to start a grocery shop. When Ravi Jain of ShantiSeva visited her, she was plucking garlic from the fields and she wanted to start her own business. She had bought a refrigerator from loan amount. When news of Ravi Jain’s stay in Shujalpur broke out, some regional TV news channels insisted to visit Tapka Basantpur with Ravi Jain. Seema Bai and her family members were interviewed on camera. Later in the evening, three TV channels ran a four minute story on ShantSeva’s efforts. The news anchor captioned it as “HELP BANK who charges nothing in return”.
Seema Bai has began to repay her loan, she hopes to turn her small shop into a much bigger one.