Our large network of volunteers enables the Sangha to respond promptly and effectively to disasters like famines, droughts, floods, earthquakes and other calamities. We focus on meeting immediate basic human needs by providing shelter, food, and health relief services. We also provide assistance to individuals and families affected by disaster to enable them to resume their normal daily activities independently. Hundreds of monks joined forces to provide extensive relief and rehabilitation during the Bengal famine, Midnapore cyclone, Oakhali riot Bihar flood, Maharashtra earthquake and 2004 tsunami among others.











Relief Projects


Flood Relief In Bihar (Recent Update - 3rd Sept, 2008)

Flood Relief in Bihar

Most part of the Madhepura and Saharsa districts in Bihar is inundated and under water after the river Kosi washed away its bank and flowed over four districts. Millions of people became homeless and spending their days under trees and open sky. The sannyasins and volunteers of the Bharat Sevashram Sangha, after setting up a relief centre on 26th August at Sarbanarayan Singh Ramkumar Singh College, Saharsa, are distributing cooked food to nearly 10,000 flood-affected people at Cachra and Karaya villages of Sourbazar Block and remote villages of Biratpur School area of Sonbarsa Block in Saharsa district and Sabaila Sinheswar etc. villages of Madhepura district. Dry food stuff of chira, gur, sattoo, baby food, clothing, polythene, tarpaulins etc. are also being distributed to nearly 5000 flood-affected people daily. Relief materials are also being distributed among the flood affected people who have taken shelter-houses at 28 relief centres setup by Govt. at Saharsa town. Besides, Sangha's relief work has been expanded in Purnia district also.


Flood Relief in Gujrat

The Bharat Sevashram Sangha through its Surat Branch, has undertaken extensive relief work in the flood affected areas of Surat in Gujart for the last few days. The Sangha has already distributed cooked food to nearly 3500 people at Katargam, Gurukul Vidhyapith, Milan Mandir at Annie Besant Road. Monks and volunteers from Ahmedabad, Kalol, Dediapara, Baroda, Mumbai branches of the Sangha have also reached the flood affected areas and strengthened Sangha's relief work there. The Sangha is distributing cooked food among the flood affected people by boat to different villages like Kesar, Chabrabhata, Amroli, Uttran, Monj Kalia, etc.The Sangha has also made arrangement for the treatment of the flood victims.



The Sangha’s first disaster relief project can be traced to 1923 with the Bengal Famine. Through the last 89 years the Sangha has responded to natural calamities such as the West Bengal Floods (1978, 1998, and 2001), Bhopal Gas Tragedy (1980), Cyclone in Andhra Pradesh (1996), and Super cyclone in Orissa (1999), Bhuj earthquake (2001), Mumbai & Gujarat Flash Flood (2005).
The Sangha also provide services at times of political unrest such as the India-Pakistan partition and the Bangladesh Liberation Movement by setting up refugee camps and war evacuee camps.







Tamil Nadu, India

 

The state of Tamil Nadu as the worst affected with a death toll of 7,793. Districts of Cuddalore, Nagapattinam and Chennai were amongst the worst hit. The Sangha was one of the first to begin massive relief operations.

Cooked food was distributed continuously to more than 5000 tsunami affected people for a week through our Free Food Program. Basic cooking ingredients such as groceries, pulses, rice and other supplies were also handled out. Clothing, blankets, baby food, polythene sheets and medical supplies were disbursed to marooned districts.

 

The tsunami swept away a large number of houses leaving a vast majority of families in temporary shelters or camps. The Sangha launched a rehabilitation drive by volunteering to help rebuild houses. More than 150 houses were constructed at Sonankuppam village in Cuddaloer. Mechanised boats and fishing nets were also distributed to local fisherfolk.



Andaman & Nicobar Islands

About 1900 islanders were confirmed dead from a population of some 400000 in the aftermath of the tsunami. The islands, only 100 km or so from the epicenter, suffered extensive destruction on the southern cluster from Car Nicobar to Indira Point.

 

The Sangha faced the daunting task of repairing the lives and property of ten of thousands of people and monitoring relief and rehabilitation measures. Volunteers started extensive relief work at Port Blair & Little Andaman, Hut Bay Islands among other districts.

 

Free cooked food was supplied to 10000 people for almost 3 months in 5 camps in addition to distribution of essential dry food and ingredients.



Rehabilitation Program, Kolkata

 

The Sangha is currently involved with the rehabilitation and resettlement of canal dwellers implemented by the Kolkata Environmental implementation Project Trust (KEIP). It is a bilateral project with Asia Development Bank (ADB), Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) and the Government of West Bengal. KMC has provided flats to 3500 canal dwellers at the subsidized rate of 5% of the total construction cost.

 

The Sangha overseas administration and interfaces with the beneficiaries. BSS also contributes by guiding the socio-economic development of the canal dwellers through projects concentrating on vocational training, formation of Self Help Groups, assistance in opening bank and insurance accounts and formation of user groups who manage maintenance of community assets.


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Services to the sick and ailing forms a core of the Sangha’s operations. Spread over the country 46 branches and 300 sub-centres maintain hospitals and charitable dispensaries in urban and rural areas. Mobile medical dispensaries reach out to the remotest parts of the country. Health care and awareness programmes on leprosy eradication. TB control, malaria, filarial and diarrhea camps are regularly organized.



Cancer Care Unit, Mumbai

 

The Sangha setup a Cancer Care Unit that offers specialized consultation, a chemotherapy day-care centre and a home for cancer patients. The chemotherapy day-care centre provides specialized consultation for cancer patients under the supervision of eminent medical oncologists. Plans are underway to expand the existing capacity and infrastructure. The unit cared for 2000 patients last year and was unable to cope with the increased inflow of patients due accurate diagnosis is central to complete treatment and care. A Diagnostic Centre is therefore being conceptualized.



Seva Niketans

 

A large majority of people travel to Mumbai for cancer treatment and are often unable to cope with the financial and mental burden. BSS, Navi Mumbai setup the First Seva Niketan to help patients and their families by providing by providing free accommodation, free transportation to the hospital, subsidized canteen facilities, counseling and awareness programs, etc. Mumbai now has 3 Seva Niketans operating a total of 32 rooms and 8 dormitories and has assisted 6838 patients till date.

 


Tuberculosis Treatment

 

As part of our agenda to improve health care for the masses, T camps are organized offering free treatment and medicines with X-ray and sputum test facilities. Over 500 patients have been cured as a result of our initiatives.

 


Leprosy Control & Welfare Services

 

About 286000 cases of leprosy were detected globally in 2005. India is home to 70% of the world’s leprosy patients. The challenging task is not only the eradication of the afflicted into mainstream society. The Sangha first approached this public health problem in 1981. Work started in Jamshedpur, Jharkhand with Leprosy Welfare and Rehabilitation Programs covering a population of 1 million. The Sangha runs 4 referral leprosy hospitals for severe reaction and serious ulcer homes for old, infirm and destitute leprosy patients. A Leprosy Colony is also being planned.

 


Rehabilitation

 

Rehabilitation programs have been introduced to reduce the impact of disabilities on the social and economic life of leprosy-affected people. The programs enable them to undertake income-generating occupations to support themselves and their families. We also advocate awareness programs that disseminate accurate information about leprosy.

The Sangha has setup a Leprosy Rehabilitation Promotion Unit. This Unit, conceptualized on the guidelines laid down by the Government of India, carries out surgical operations correcting deformities caused by leprosy. Over 350 patients have been assisted and rehabilitated into society. These operations have been carried out free of cost by eminent surgeons. Vocational training programs are organized to encourage patients to be self-sufficient. The Sangha also assists in rebuilding old dilapidated leprosy colonies. Children of leprosy patients now have access to education. Schools uniforms, food, books and other facilities are provided free of cost.

 


Health Awareness Camps


 

Medical teams organize health awareness camps in BSS schools and educational institutions. A total of 6116 students have been examined so far and given treatment when necessary. Special clinics held over the past two years for the care of primitive tribal groups have benefited 3793 patients.

 


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A large majority of India’s population has little or no access to educational opportunities. Realising that the spread of education in rural and semi urban areas is crucial to the development of the nation, the Sangha operates more than a 100 institutions in the country providing quality education to disadvantaged children. This combined with vocational training programs empower the youth to be self-sufficient and economically independent.

The Sangha runs institutes for formal and non-formal education which include primary schools, night schools, junior basic schools, junior high schools, high schools and colleges.

We focus on a holistic approach with academic education imparted in harmony with moral and spiritual teachings. Students are taught to respect the traditions and culture of their country, realize the dignity of labour and the fundamental principles of human life, which contributes to building their character.

 


Pranavananda Computer Institute

 

The Sangha has setup a computer training institute for underprivileged students at Kolkata. Courses are offered at subsidized cost and include modules such as DOS, E-Commerce, HTML, DHTML, Internet, E-mail, F.A., Multimedia and Java scripting. 850 students enrolled in centres in and around Kolkata.

 


Scripture Studies

 

The Sangha, since 1949, has setup a department for organizing scriptural studies among the student community. Regular 3-year graduated level courses are offered by the Sangha. Free copies of scriptures are provided to the students. In rural areas, teaching aids such as lantern slides are used by the instructors. In the year under review, 9000 students from 400 schools and colleges students appeared in the annual examination through 32 centres. Twenty four successful students were given awards.

 


Physical Education

 

The Sangha believes in proper physical education and imparts instructions in the art of self-defence through its centres and Milan Mandir throughout the country. Courses are imparted in wrestling, boxing, ju-jitsu and tradition martial arts. The Sangha lays great emphasis in yogic exercises (yogasanas) and has several yoga training centres in different parts of the country.

 


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Our Tribal Welfare Program is an extensive initiative covering the areas of education, health and income generation for weaker communities. Our activities are aimed at enabling these communities to be self-sufficient with sustainable employment opportunities and assisting them to be mainstreamed into society. The Sangha operates Tribal Welfare projects in the states of West Bengal, Jharkhand, Orissa, and Gujarat.

Health

 

The Sangha operates a multi-specialty free hospital at its Ashram in Barajuri. It is the only medical facility within an area of 12000 sp. km. The hospital has cared for 548 patients and has recently introduced an ambulance service extending its geographical reach. The Ashram also runs a charitable dispensary. Four mobile medical units operating at 64 locations provide health care facilities to 200000 people under the Government of India’s Grant-in-Aid programme.

Awareness campaigns are organized to make tribals more conscious of health risks. Interactive aids such as audio-visual presentations are used to educate the tribals on issues of health and hygiene.

 


Elderly & Orphan Care Programs

 

An Old People’s Care Program provides complete care to 60 elderly people, 45 of whom are sponsored by Helpage India. These people by the Sangha, which provides free food rations, utensils, medicare, clothing and cost of house repairs.

 


Education

 

56 years of Independence has left unchanged the life of the tribals in Ghatshila, with the standard of education leaving a lot to be desired. Students from these regions are without hope of competing with their counterparts from more progressive areas of the country and disillusioned, the youth are easily lured to anti-social and anti-national activities to earn easy money.

The Sangha believes in the transforming capabilities of education imparted to minorities and backward classes in our diverse society. Education improves the sensibilities of the multitudes and is therefore an exercise that encompasses all sections of the enabled and participating members of society.

The Sangha, in an attempt to remedy this situation runs 17 free days school (one high school and 16 primary school), providing each of the 1557 pupils with mid-day means uniforms, shoes, books and stationery. Although the Government of India has chipped in with support of 750 wards, many students have been denied due to financial constraints.

The Sangha also runs residential schools for boys and girls separately with the Indian Government bearing the expenses in both, with much emphasis laid on character building and extra-curricular activities. Computer education programs have also been initiated for tribal students.

The Sangha also has support systems that assist these students in continuing education through its centres throughout the country.

 


Income Generation

 

Our income generation programs reflect our belief that social equity is impossible without economic empowerment. The two have to go hand in hand and complement each other. The Sangha is active in providing vocational training and skill upgradation leading to sustainable employment opportunities.

The economy of Ghatshila and adjoining areas have suffered due to the closure of several industries leaving a large majority unemployed. To counter this shortfall, we began programs imparting vocational training. The Sangha runs 2 handlooms weaving centres, a soft luggage centre, a carpentry workshop and a handicraft training and production unit empowering 238 tribals.

Tribals youth are also sent to our Delhi Ashram for computer education, which has helped 300 tribals to gain direct employment in different welfare projects.

Agro faming has also been assisting tribals farm a variety of vegetables and fruits using modern tools and technology. The Sangha has setup a Agro Horticulture Project or a model demonstration farm which imparts training to local farmers to help them derive maximum yield from their meager resources.

The Sangha also imparts vocational training through weaving and knitting centres, cane and bamboo centres as well as jute and handicraft centres.

 


Home Construction

 

Extreme poverty force many tribals to live in appalling conditions in structures made of leaves and mud. These houses would often collapse during monsoons and had proved to be breeding grounds for diseases and unhygienic conditions.

The Sangha initiated a home construction project that provided families with a solid cement structure that consisted of one room, a porch and basic amenities.

 


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Moving Ashrams

 

In an attempt to increase awareness of the ideals of vedantic philosophy and the way of life the Sangha has formed seven moving Ashrams consisting of highly educated and spiritually advanced Sanyasins. These groups travel through villages and towns throughout the country organizing meetings and conferences, and offer spiritual services to create awareness of the vedantic ideals.





During the year 2004-2004, these groups organized more than 265 cultural and spiritual programmes through which they interacted with more than 850000 people.

 


Householder Ashrams

 

The Acharya was a great believer of unity amongst all sections of society. He dreamt of a society free from divisions of caste, creed or religion and abhorred the idea of untouchability. The Sangha has setup a forum though which societal reforms could be achieved.

The Householder Ashrams is a common platform through which people from all sections and economic strata unite and work for the welfare of the society. The Sangha maintains hundreds of such Ashrams in India and abroad which carry out various activities that particularly benefit the economically, religious and spiritually disadvantaged.

 


Pilgrim Services

 

The Sangha actively provides services for pilgrims at places of worship and religious fairs. Started in 1924, this movement now enjoys a country-wide support from all sections of the society. The Sangha has played a pivotal role in creating a healthy and favourable atmosphere at these places. The services include free shelter and facilities, medical treatment and spiritual services.

 


Kumbh Mela

 

Kumbha Mela derives its name from the immortal – Pot of Nectar- described in ancient Vedic scriptures known as the Puranas Kumbha in Sanskrit languages means “pot or pitcher’. Mela means ‘festival’. The Kumbh Mela is the largest pilgrimage gathering in the worlds attended by millions of people from across the globe. The pilgrimage occurs four times every twelve years, once at each four locations in the country


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