Interventions >> Charity >> Balikasadanam

History

Balikasadanam was started at Urakam in the year 1993 in the 1 acre compound and the old ancestral house donated by Gopurathingal Smt.Parvathi Amma and her daughter Smt.Karthiayani Amma. Both of them suffering from old age ailments were staying in this house then. Initially,there were only six inmates. The activities slowly picked up momentum with the active participation and help of RSS workers and well wishers in and around Urakam. In the following 3 years RSS workers in Cherpu, Karuvannur and Irinjalakkuda got increasingly involved in Balikasadanam activities and with their help an awareness campaign was initiated in these areas. The fund collected through this campaign was utilized for construction of a new hall and improvement of facilities. In the year 1995 our well wishers employed in Gulf Countries promised to collect donations for the development of Balikasadanam and their efforts paid off in collecting donations totaling Rs.14Lakhs. This paved the way for construction of a new hostel building, cost of which came to Rs.15Lakhs.

Smt.Parvathi Amma passed away in the year 1998 and Smt.Karthiyani Amma in 2002. All their savings (both of them were employees in the State Govt) had been donated to Balikasadanam. A new hall was constructed in 2006 utilizing their savings. Though there were none in the hierarchical line of these pious ladies, Balikasadanam made their sacred memories immortal. The contributions of Rajeswari,Ponnamma,Rathi.Sini,Kala,and Bindu Balakrishnan(the present Warden)who were holding responsible positions at different times for the development of Balikasadanam are to be gratefully acknowledged.


Activities

Balikasadanam wakes up by 4 AM every day and remains active till 10-10.30 in the night. The day in the Balikasadanam starts at 6AM with morning prayer (Prathasmaran) followed by yoga classes. There is evening prayer (Bhajan) from 6.30PM to 7.00PM. All the inmates take part in the Prathasmarana,Bhajan and yoga classes.

On holidays at 4.30PM Sevika samithi unit (sakha) assembles and on Sundays at 10AM Balagokulam unit functions. Prescribed training programmes are arranged in these assemblies and these activities add to the overall developments of the children,both physical and cultural. Children having aptitude for music/dance etc. are given special training in Karnatic music,Dance,Sanskrit and also Akshara Slokam(poetry recitation)

Cleaning and upkeep of Balikasadanam Building and premises are done by the inmates themselves. They also provide help in the kitchen.

Looking after the cows, vegetable garden work, gardening etc.are some of the other activities undertaken by the children during their leisure time.

Under the auspices of Balikasadanam State level personality development programs are arranged during annual school vacation for the benefit of inmates of all similar Balikasadanam orphanages in the State and children from Urakam Balikasadanam usually take part in those programs. This helps the inmates to improve upon their general knowledge and leadership qualities.

There are talented children among the inmates who have participated and won prizes in the State level school youth festivals and orphanage festivals. Reasonably well conducted Onam celebrations and anniversary celebrations in the Balikasadanam provide opportunities for the talented inmates to stage their artistic performances.

A balagokulam unit also functions here at sadanam

Selection Method

Applications received from all districts in the State are scrutinized annually by a Scrutiny Committee and girls in the age group of 5 to 15 who have lost their parents are given admission .Those from very poor financial background with parent(s) living are also considered for admission. Wherever found necessary genuineness of requests for admission is got verified through RSS machinery at the respective places before taking final decision. Girls under very pathetic circumstances recommended by service organizations and social workers from rural and other backward regions are also considered for admission.

At present 75 girls of different age group hailing from almost all districts in Kerala are being looked after in Balikasadanam. They include those who have lost both the parents and also those who have lost either parent. There are girls who were directly taken over from areas affected by natural calamities.

Opportunities

Opportunities are afforded for career development to those children having aptitude and capacity for studies. Following are the few who have taken up higher studies after SSLC

  • LLB 01
  • Nursing 01
  • BCA 01
  • Music 02
  • TTC 04
  • Plus Two 08
  • Computer 03
  • Nursery Teachers(Balasevika ) 05

Facilities

Decent living facilities are provided to the inmates of Balikasadanam. 8 to 10 girls are accommodated in one room measuring 14X18. We are in the process of providing berth type coats in the rooms and also a pond in the compound for bathing and swimming. A separate study room is provided for the benefit of children studying in higher classes. A library and reading room has also been set up for specialized reading. Vocational training facilities are provided in the computer training centre and Tailoring Training centre conducted by Sanjeevani Samithi. Facilities for sports and games activitiesand other recreational activities and also for TV watching are also available. During examination period ,competent people with teaching experience from among the well wishers of Balikasadanam visit and give special coaching to those requiring such coaching from the exam point of view. The inmates are allowed to send letters to their homes occasionally and also to make phone calls on Sundays (after noon).

Marriages

From among the inmates in the Balikasadanam six girls have been married off and provided with normal family life. This became possible due to help rendered by benevolent people in the society.