Monday, 5 November 2012

Durgabai Deshmukh awards for social work


New Delhi:(Page3 News Network)-President, Shri Pranab Mukherjee conferred the Dr. Durgabai Deshmukh awards for the years 2005, 2006 and 2007 at the Darbar Hall of the Rashtrapati Bhavan, here today. The keynote address was delivered by Smt. Krishna Tirath, Minister of Women and Child Development.
The eighth Dr. Durgabai Deshmukh Award for the year was 2005 jointly awarded to the Mizoram Hmeithai (Widows) Association and the People’s Forum, Bhubaneswar. The Mizoram Hmeithai (Widows) Association has worked for bringing succour and relief to thousands of widows and destitute women and hundreds of abandoned orphan children. The Association runs residential schools for under privileged children, provides aid to widows/distressed women and runs a home for women in difficult circumstances. It has a home for abandoned children and arranges for their adoption. It also runs a mobile clinic in the remote areas of Mizoram. 
While the People’s Forum, Bhubaneswar was awarded for its landmark services in the rescue and rehabilitation of hundreds of mentally ill women and for its exemplary work with women in distress. The main activities of the institution include its mission ASHRA for destitute women’s mental health, helping the formation of Self Help Groups of poor, needy and oppressed women and to attain improvement in their socio-economic condition through economic activities by giving priority to women directly in production activities so that opportunities are created for them to earn additional income. 
The ninth Dr. Durgabai Deshmukh Award for the year 2006 was awarded to Sumangali Seva Ashram of Bangalore. The main activities of the institution include care, education and development of deserted, orphan and needy children and socio-economic opportunities for development of women. Apart from its initiatives in formal and non-formal education, the institution carries out Vocational Training, provides Micro credit facilities, runs a Family Counselling Centre, has more than 100 Creches, promotes Income Generating activities, runs a Short Stay Home and Awareness Generation Programmes for women. 
The tenth Dr. Durgabai Deshmukh Award for the year 2007 was awarded to Snehalaya of Ahmednagar, Maharashtra for its landmark work in the rehabilitation of women of the red light areas and other destitute women. Snehalaya has successfully intervened to rescue hundreds of girls and women who were caught in the quagmire of prostitution and has rehabilitated them in the mainstream of society. 
Delivering the keynote address at the event, Smt. Krishna Tirath, Minister of Women and Child Development said that Dr. Durgabai Deshmukh was the mother of social service in India and the visionary founder Chairperson of the Central Social Welfare Board. She noted that Durgabai Deshmukh was a feminist, a Parliamentarian, an administrator and a great visionary. As a Member of Parliament she carried out programmes for educating, training and rehabilitating needy women and children. Dr. Durgabai, in her unique way demonstrated to the world that women, through co-operative endeavor, could achieve the vision of universal opportunity and justice for society, the Minister added. She congratulated the awardees for their work for the needy. The Minister said that the Ministry of Women and Child Development is committed to supporting the Board in all its endeavours. Since the mandates of the Ministry and the Board are largely identical vis-a-vis the development of women and children, the Ministry of WCD as the funding body is giving increasing funding support year after year. In the year 2007-08 the Board received funds to the tune of about Rs. 138 crores from the MWCD and in 2012-13 the funds allocated are about Rs. 190 crores. 
The Central Social Welfare Board was set up by a Resolution of Government of India dated 12th August, 1953 with the object of promoting social welfare activities and implementing welfare programmes for women, children and the handicapped through voluntary organisations. Dr. Durgabai became the first chairperson of the Central Board which she, with her practical knowledge of the field and personal experience, managed successfully for 10 years. Dr. Durgabai was honoured for her outstanding contribution to the cause of Peace, Social Welfare, Literacy and work among the downtrodden by national and international agencies. She won the Nehru Literacy Award, UNESCO Award for outstanding work in the field of Literacy and was decorated with the PADMA VIBUSHAN. Indian Posts and Telegraphs Department issued a stamp in her honour. 
The Central Social Welfare Board had constituted the Dr. Durgabai Deshmukh award in 1997 and it is given every year to a voluntary organisation that has done outstanding and innovative work in the field of women’s development. 

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