|Samadrishti, Kshamata Vikas Evam Anusandhan Mandal (SAKSHAM) is a charitable national organization registered at Nagpur under registration number MAH/654/2008(N). The organization has its head office in Nagpur, Maharashtra. SAKSHAM was established with an aim to bring all the persons with various disabilities in the main stream of our nation. SAKSHAM believes that the disabled people are not burden on the society but assets of the nation. Though presently dedicated to the service of visually impaired, SAKSHAM has its commitment towards all the persons
with various disabilities and also to environment, health and other social activities to strengthen the society. Presently SAKSHAM is running following projects for INTEGRATED DEVELOPMENT OF THE DISABLED.
MADHAV EYE BANK:- SAKSHAM not only propagates the importance and divinity of Eye Donation, but also manages the donation of corneas through eye banking and grafting thereof to give sight. With its pledge to establish at least 100 ‘Madhav Eye Banks’ the organization so far could establish 12 licensed eye banks in various parts of the country including the states of Maharashtra, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Orissa, Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh etc. (Licensed eye banks =14, Eye collection Centres = 12, Awareness Centres = 24 ) By the end of year 2010 the chain of eye banks collected around 2500 cornea giving benefit to more than 800 corneal blind by sight restoration and many with the use of the cornea for therapeutic purpose.
MADHAV AUDIO BOOKS LIBRARY:- SAKSHAM creates books in audio form through audiocassettes, CDs etc. So far over 500 books have been created with more than 15000 cassettes by SAKSHAM’s Nagpur unit. The service is provided Free Of Cost to needy blind students. The books are first created in Audio Book form with the help of voice recordings by more than 50 volunteers from various fields including housewives, retired people, professionals, teachers, students who lend their voice to record the books either on cassettes or in the digital form in computers. The cassettes are then multiplied or the audio tracks edited and provided to needy blind students for study. We got 7000 blank audio cassettes thru “Cassette Tula” of BJP National President Hon. Nitinji Gadkari. Weight of cassettes equaling his weight. SAKSHAM runs such Audio Books Libraries at Nagpur, Kalyan, and Kolhapur in Maharashtra and Ambala in Haryana.
MADHAV BRAILLE BOOKS CREATION CENTRE:- In view of providing ‘Sanskar Sahitya’ (Literature giving the values in life) SAKSHAM’s Nagpur, Kalyan, Akola (Maharashtra) units are also creating books in Braille Script through computers. The volunteers force mainly comprising of either housewives or retired people who after a brief training of computer orientation now contributing to this service and created around 80 books in short span of three years. The books include first ever Braille Versions of some important Marathi Granthas (Large volume books) like Samarth Ramdas Swami written ‘DASBODH’, Rashtra Sant Tukadoji Maharaj written ‘GRAAMGEETA’, The famous bird watcher Shri. Maruti Chitampalli written ‘RAANVAATA’, and many other books along with books related to curriculum.
KRISHNAJVOTI AGARBATTHI NIRMAN KENDRA:- At this centre of SAKSHAM in Palakkad, Kerala, blind people are manufacturing incense sticks and soap successfully earning their living and now they are no longer depending upon the society. The demand is more than supply at present and therefore there is need to raise the production capacity.
BLIND WOMEN HOSTEL:- In Kaladi, Kerala SAKSHAM is running a hostel for visually challenged women where blind student girls and other blind women are housed with a facility of good food and honorable living.
SWARADRISHTI:- A musical group in Nagpur comprising of visually challenged, physically handicapped as well as normal artists is actively presenting musical programme to earn ‘Maandhan’ (Money of honor) that is distributed amongst blind and orthopedically challenged artists.
SURDAS BHAIAN MANDALI- SAKSHAM’s Palakkad, Kerala unit has many groups of music loving visually challenged people who present regular music programs of devotional songs and earn their living.
LEGAL ADVISE CELL:- The physically challenged people face many problems when they attempt to seek job or facilities they deserve as their legal rights. The apathy and ignorance of the society is the responsible factor for this. Counseling of such sufferers is undertaken with proper guidance under this Legal Advise Cell at Nagpur.
SAKSHAM PHOTOCOPY CENTRE:- An orthopedically challenged youth is being rehabilitated through a training and job to run this photocopying centre at Nagpur by SAKSHAM recently.
AVURVEDIC AUSHADI NIRMAN KENDRA:- SAKSHAM Varanasi UP unit’s team of blind persons has been trained to produce some daily need Avurvedic medicines through this project.
MARRIAGE BUREAU FOR PHYSICALLY CHALLENGED:- At Nasik, Maharashtra and New Delhi an activity of arranging marriages amongst physically challenged is run since last many years by SAKSHAM unit.
RECREATION CENTER FOR PHYSICALLY HANDICAPPED:- Like their sighted counterparts blind people also need some moments for recreation. If such centers where a facility to regular visit for entertainment, recreation, hobby class, etc. is available through providing story books in Braille and audio, music system,TV, audio books, audio games in computers, toys, accessible indoor and outdoor games, clay models making, and many other activities. One such centre has recently been inaugurated at Akola, Maharashtra.
SAKSHAM LOW VISION ENHANCEMENT CENTRE Low vision is a subject not popularly known to people in our country. A category between Sightedness and Blindness, which can not be corrected with medicines, surgery or use of spectacle correcting refractive error. In fact about 75-80% visually challenged are facing low vision problem. To comfort such sufferers by providing magnifiers designed by Dr. Ramesh Sathe of Pune a Low Vision Enhancement centre was established at Nagpur in collaboration with Vijaya Memorial Trust, Pune. Many people are benefited through this centre so far. SAKSHAM organized low vision enhancement camps in Gadchiroli and Nagpur Districts especially for primary standard low vision students and screened more than 300 children of which around 65 to 70 students have been benefited. Presently SAKSHAM runs Low Vision Enhancement Centres at Nagpur, Kalyan, Kolhapur (Maharashtra) and Ambala (Haryana).
SAKSHAM’S REGULAR EVENTS:-
Louis Braille (inventor of Braille script) birth anniversary on 4th January – The inventor of Braille script is duly remembered by SAKSHAM every year by organizing events related Braille reading, writing, books publishing, etc.
Sant Surdas Jayanthi – Saint Surdas is the source of inspiration for all the visually impaired in India. In spite of his blindness Sant Surdas’s description of Lord Shri Krishna in his literature and bhajans is so much amazing that it has inspired thousands of sighted scholars to undertake research Raksha Bandhan – Signifying the bonding between human being the Raksha Bandhan festival is celebrated by SAKSHAM by sighted members tying rakhi’s to their blind friends assuring them about support and cooperation Saksham Foundation Day – SAKSHAM was founded on 25th June 2008. Ever since the day is observed by organizing various events for the benefit of various kinds of differently able.
Eye Donation Fortnight – Nationwide the Eye Donation Fortnight is observed during 25th August to 8th September every year. SAKSHAM undertakes intense campaigning for inspiring people to pledge for eye donation during this fortnight. Thanks to its consistent awareness campaign more than 2500 eyes have so far been donated to SAKSHAM managed Eye Banks all over the country enabling and restoring sight for more than 800 corneal blind.
World Disability Day – To mark the world disability day in December every year SAKSHAM marks the day by giving assistive aids to disabled and explores job potentials for them with the help of local industries, businesses Protection of the environment is also on the agenda of SAKSHAM. Hence “The Vasundhara Diwas” is also observed by the organization. SAKSHAM celebrates “Helen Keller Jayanti”. An icon of showing excellence of the capacity even being a sufferer of multiple disabilities Helen Keller has always been a source of building confidence amongst the disable
SAKSHAM’S OCCASSIONAL ACTIVITIES
SAKSHAM believes that every person including the disable has an equal right to EXPERIENCE, EDUCATION AND ENTERTAINMENT. To ensure thisSAKSHAM organized special tours for its differently able members as under “RAANVATA”- A team of 55 visually challenged members along with their escorts was taken to dense forest of Navegaon National Park of Gondia District in Maharashtra for a Jungle Safari on the occasion of release of Braille version of Marathi book “Raanvata” written by noted ornithologist Shri. Maruti Chitampalli.The book was released by Shri. Chitampalli who also explained the visually challenged about how to read and experience the jungle. A small trekking, visit to water hole, climbing the watch tower was a lifetime experience for all the participants
“GANGOTRI”– A team of 18 visually and 1 mentally challenged members of SAKSHAM were given an opportunity to visit GANGOTRI in The Himalaya. It was the first day of opening of the holy gates of Gangotri temple. The drastic difference in the temperature, the holy Ganga in its infant state, the altitude, the purity of nature and shear enjoyment was a rare gift to all the physically and mentally challenged members.
“SAMUDRA DARSHAN”– Our country is blessed with nature’s best possible treasure in The Divine Himalaya to Deep Ocean from three sides. No disability should deprive a person of experiencing this greatness of nature. With this thought SAKSHAM organized ‘Samudra Darshan’ study tour for 22 visually and orthopaedically challenged to Goa. Saksham Goa unit with the state government of Goa hosted the event to make it a life time experience, entertainment with education for all the special participants.
SRI LANKA DELEGATION VISITS MADHAV NETRA PEDHI, NAGPUR – SAKSHAM has pledged to establish a chain of Eye Banks all over the country to fight corneal blindness with the weapon of effective infrastructure and extensive eye donation awareness campaign. This noble cause was blessed by the visit of a delegation from Sri Lanka under the leadership of Honorable Chancellor of The University of Sabargamuv, Sri Lanka to Madhav Netra Pedhi, Nagpur. The famous singer of Sri Lanka also accompanied the delegation.
NETRA DAAN RAIL YATRA – A special Eye Donation Awareness Campaign was undertaken in the form of a countrywide Rail Yatra to collect at least 1 lac pledge forms for eye donation from people all over the country. The team for this cause was headed by Shri. Avinash Sangwai, Mahamantri, called on various prominent personalities like Shri. Nanaji Deshmukh, Shri. Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Ex PM, Shri. Narendra Modi, CM, Gujarat, Dr. Raman Singh, CM, Chhattisgarh, Hon. .Shivraj Singh, CM, Madhya Pradesh etc. and many others to seek their blessings for the cause.
WARDHA AROGYA MERATHON – 70000 citizen of Wardha District were checked up for General Health, Eyes, etc. From this activity 7500 cataract patients were detected and around 2500 were operated for cataract surgery free of cost.
VOLUNTEERS TRAINING WORKSHOPS – SAKSHAM organizes workshops for dedicated volunteers for (1) Creation of Books in Braille (2) Creation of Audio Books (3) Low Vision Enhancement and (4) Eye Donation awareness.
CYBER CAFÉ FOR VISUALLY IMPAIRED:-
Through information and technology the visually impaired people can now a days may gain a lot. Web browsing gives knowledge of the world. However since such facilities as cyber café are not available for them, except at some metro cities, a large number of blind populations are deprived of this important avenue of seeking the treasure of knowledge.
BRIDGE COURSE FOR BLIND:-
After completion of schooling and going to either college education or seeking job a blind persons needs to be well groomed. A specially designed course to bridge the period using their leisure time to equip them with personality development skills, communication skills, English speaking, computer literacy, mobility, competitive examinations preparation, etc. may prove a boon for them.
DTP AND DATA ENTRY JOB WORK UNDERTAKEN BY PHYSICALLY HANDICAPPED INCLUDING BLIND:-
If computer labs are setup and physically or visually challenged are trained for undertaking DTP and data entry job work this may be of great help for them to earn their living. Recently such activity has been undertaken by our Nagpur, Maharashtra unit.
RECORDING STUDIO FOR CREATION OF AUDIO BOOKS FOR BLIND:-
Presently the audio books are mainly recorded on audio tapes or in computers, laptops or mp3 recorders by volunteers at their homes. As such the audio quality is usually not up to the standard. If the recording is done in studios good quality audio books can be created in large quantity.
PHYSIOTHERAPY, MASSAGING, ACUPRESSURE CENTER RUN BY VISUALLY CHALLENGED:-
Now training courses for giving training for physiotherapy, massaging, acupressure etc. are available at some cities like New Delhi, Mumbai etc. for blind people. If blind people trained by such centers are given an opportunity to undertake such profession by providing necessary infrastructure it may be of a great help to them earn their living.
SPEECH THERAPY CENTRE THROUGH “PRAYAS PADDHATI”:-
The “Prayas Paddhati”has been developed by Advocate Punjab Shirbhate of Wardha District in Maharashtra. This new therapy enabled about 25 speech impaired communicate verbally so far. Initially to be undertaken as a research project the therapy is proposed to be made available to needy people through SAKSHAM’s units all over the country.
SAKSHAM SEVA SANKUL:- An ambitious project where all the facilities for all kinds of disabilities will be made available under one roof. THE B S R ROOM – A unique concept of “Books for Special Readers” where the precious treasure of Indian Literature will be accessible to visually challenged in all the three formats viz. Braille, Sound and Reading with the help of related equipments under one roof.