A child roaming aimlessly on an Indian road is not a foreign sight, nor is the sight of a child sweeping the floors in rags and begging for a penny unseen before. There are many; most of them orphan. Having lost the parental guidance and care; they struggle. Struggle to survive. When we were fighting over each other’s lunch box at school; there were children who could barely manage a meal per day. SOS children’s village’s analysis claimed some really moving facts:
About 20 million children (4% of their population in India; more than the number of people living in New Delhi) are orphan. Of them, parents of only 0.3% are dead. Rest have either left or abandoned. UP, Bihar and Maharashtra are among the top three states with the count at 47.56, 22.47 and 16.17 Lakhs respectively.
The only sigh of relief in this regard is that there are people working for this with a will to do something good. The Miracle Foundation (http://www.miraclefoundation.org/) is one of them.
Founded on May 14th, 2000; the Miracle Foundation is now an established and trusted multinational non-governmental organization (NGO) that empowers orphans and orphanages to reach their full potential. In India, The Miracle Foundation operates as a fully licensed, Section 25 organization known as Miracle Foundation India. Based in Delhi, Miracle Foundation India is governed by a prestigious Board of Directors and an Executive Director with over 25 years experience in the Indian social development sector.
With a mission to “empower orphans to reach their full potential—one child at a time,” The Miracle Foundation provides the orphans in their care with a loving, nurturing environment in which the children can thrive. Like most charities, The Miracle Foundation relies on public generosity to carry out their work, which includes: long-term, one-to-one sponsorship of a child, individual donations, or travelling to the orphanages via The Miracle Foundation’s Voluntourism program. As a small non-profit organization with a large number of volunteers and very few employees,TMF has kept their overhead low, resulting in a large percentage of donations going to direct care of orphans, rather than administrative costs. In 2008, 83% of all donations went towards program services, 12% went to operations and 5% went to fundraising (as against of about 60% towards services otherwise).
The Miracle Foundation are not just helping the children but their story also serves as an inspiration to many who wish to come forward and help. Its founder Caroline Boudreaux has been doing a great job with her entire team.
Team Sociovigil was lucky enough to have a short correspondence with her. We thank her for taking out time from her busy schedule and responding to us. We bring to our readers a short questionnaire we had with them to know a little more about their beautiful efforts.
SVG:Where do you think this organization comes in bridging the gap between children and their dreams?
TMF: Many times when we start working with the children’s homes, no-one ever asks the children about their hopes and dreams. The children are so focused on survival and dealing with the challenges life gives them, they don’t often dare to dream.
Once we start working with them and offering them Life Skills Education, the children begin to experience a childhood. They begin to take their schooling seriously and after career counselling they begin to dream and dream big!
SVG:That is really a commendable job you are doing. How would you describe your journey so far?
TMF:This is a difficult field. Any parent can tell you that raising kids is hard. It is harder to raise many of them, especially when these leaders are dealing with trying to raise enough money to feed them.
“Our journey is similar to many of the children’s homes we work with. We started because we saw a need and an injustice. We struggle because there aren’t enough people willing to help financially and emotionally yet, we’ve kept our vision of enabling orphan children to reach their full potential and, like the homes we support, we’ve grown into a powerful organization that is doing the great work of looking after the most vulnerable children in our society. ”
SVG: How has been the response from the people? Are they stepping forward to support your campaign?
TMF: People are great and know right away that our work is noble. They like our work but sometimes hesitate to help us because they are afraid that their money won’t go where they want it to. We want our money to go to the right place too so we’ve developed a methodology that has metrics and ensures that the money people donate and we invest gets into the minds, mouths and stomachs of the children. Our biggest obstacle to success is trust. If people really knew the kind of transformation we see in the children once they start getting all they need to thrive and grow, more people would help us. As Sy Wise said, ”Nothing is heavy if everyone lifts.” We need more people to lift.
SVG: IIT Roorkee has seen many brilliant students who went on to start great social initiatives and there are many who desire to do something really substantial for the society some day. Would you like to send them a message?
TMF: Yes, I would rather be glad to. Find a great organization that is doing some good work and support them! The world needs us!
Thank you very much. That was really an inspiring talk with you. Finally we wish to congratulate you all for the commitment and zeal you have shown for the good will of children.
Thank you once again and good luck ahead.
Present article was worked upon by : Vatsal Sanjay