Dishanjali- This life supporting NGO was formed by Er. Vijay Kumar Patidar (president) during his initial days (2012) of engineering college in Indore, Madhya Pradesh.

He along with his friends were sipping in tea when a young guy came and asked “Bhaiya kuch khila do!! Bohot bhook lagi hai! ” [English Translation: Bother, please give me something to eat, am really hungry]. Kind-hearted Vijay feed him ‘samosa’ (Indian snacks) and asked him to narrate a story to him and his friends.

This little boy ran away and brought a book from his bag that he kept at the corner of the shop. After having samosa, he narrated a story from his text book; to which all, Vijay was taken aback when he came to know that this little boy wanted to study but due to financial condition of his family, he couldn’t.

Vijay was sad, and asked his friends if they want to help this kid… Everybody laughed at him saying one cannot change the fate and poverty being the problem of the country, government should look after the problem and not him. Young Vijay was not convinced and started asking help to seniors. Er. Rajeev Baghel, (pursuing Ph.D at that time,) came to rescue Vijay and started supporting him. His support gave this young guy (Vijay) a tremendous boost and started helping kids.

Vijay gradually developed his team and back in 2014, he registered this team as an NGO naming it “Dishanjali”. Dishanjali now at present has two centres, Bhopal and Indore, Madhya Pradesh, India with about 80+ members working at both the centres. This young and vivid team is dedicated to their motto… eradicate illiteracy. The young team, most of them are still students, (under-grad) voluntarily joins them, and this NGO is successfully reaching grass root level.

This NGO targets Shelter homes, Slum areas, to go and educate those underprivileged kids. They also conduct summer camps at government schools. The main agenda of summer camps is to bring kids from different walks of life, be it from slums, shelter home or the school itself, and teach them ethics and manners along with bookish knowledge so as to compete with all other privileged kids of their age, and prepare them for life. Hobby classes are also organized on regular basis to develop those kids.

One of the major events they organized is the Carrier Orientation Seminar of 10th std and 12th std pass kids at Khandwar, Madhya Pradesh. This seminar was organized at 4 places for kids who scored above 75% on their board exam. This was for kids and their parents of slums, shelter homes and Government schools. Saksham is a new programme the NGO is driving from March 2017. Under Saksham programme, volunteers take regular classes for kids of Shelter homes and Slum areas. This programme is running successfully at ‘Utthan Balghar’ (shelter home at Bhopal.) Under this programme, the volunteers have to submit progress report of every student, take regular tests and also for co-curricular activities held. All these volunteers are also paid by this NGO as quality of education and motive shouldn’t be compromised. Cloth donation drive and health checkups for kids of shelter home and slum areas are a few of the many events the NGO drives.

While in conversation with Chandarban Singh Sisodia (Vice president), he told us an amazing incident when asked about his approach towards sponsors for the events…

Last year, i.e., 2016 during Navratri (major Hindu festival of India, where people offer prayers to Devi) these young guys were planning to drive an event but was not getting the spark of what can be done.  Mr. Sisodia’s mother as any other lady of the country was making food to be offered to little kids (girls) as this is a ritual of the festival. Seeing this Mr. Sisodia thought why not to offer food to the needy kids rather than to the privileged kids who come only for the gifts after foods are offered. He discussed this along with his team and his parents and everybody wholeheartedly participated in this. So the list was being prepared as what all will be needed to feed kids from shelter homes and Slum areas…. the list was prepared and was circulated on their Whatsapp group at around 8pm. By 12 am, same night everything was sorted out as people voluntarily donated everything required. They served 150+ kids that day. Cooked themselves, no cook was hired. He says “you don’t have to find sponsorship for good cause; people come to help you eventually.”

When asked about future plans, they are now looking to come up with new centers.  People can reach them via their social media page where they seem to be quite active.

We at THOUSAND MILES salute this initiative by Dishanjali!!

It is time for us all to stand and cheer for the doer (Dishanjali here), the achiever – the one who recognizes the challenges and does something about it.”

Vince Lombardi