|Imagining - AIDS stigma|
|A child's parents die of AIDS. No family members will take them in due to the stigma. Or, a child's parents are ill or alcoholic or extremely poor. These children live on the street.|
|Prema Vasam Home for Mentally and Physically Handicapped and Orphan Children|
|Partner Projects for Empowerment - Empowerment programs to end poverty in India|
We have seen it, felt it. Connected with the founder, Selvyn Roy.
Supporting orphans with dignity and educational empowerment.
About the location
Prema Vasam is located in the village of Manjampadi, which is in the outskirts of Chennai City, India. Manjampadi is a fertile land, and most of the people that live here are farmers.
Who the organization serves
Currently Prema Vasam is home more than 200 children, half which are handicapped and half which attend school. Eight young adults are attending higher educational institutions. Prema Vasam was founded in 2005 by Clinical Psychologist Selvyn Roy. Selvyn lives at Prema Vasam and is tireless in his devotion to the children and staff. These children come from the streets of Chennai and surrounding areas, where they were abandoned by caretakers or orphaned. Without the existence of Prema Vasam these children would be left to a criminal life of theft and prostitution on the streets of Chennai. Handicapped children are often left on the street to die, as many families are so poor that they cannot attend to the specific needs of a handicapped child and feel their family’s meager resources need to be focused on healthy children. Without support handicapped children would not survive and would die without proper medical care.
Short term benefits of assistance
Children receive a clean and safe place to live, medical care, clothing, food and the opportunity to attend school. Not only are their basic needs met, they are showered with love and attention.
In supporting the handicapped children, they are given medical care and physical therapy, which ease the pain and suffering related to their condition. The special children do not attend school but have reading, play and craft time each day. Most of these children will not survive past the age of 20, but living at Prema Vasam provides them with dignity and a caring, safe and clean environment to live in comfort and peace.
Long term benefits of assistance
Because Prema Vasam cares for physical needs, provides educational opportunities and a nurturing environment, children have a safe environment and gain confidence. They become empowered to create their own productive, enjoyable and independent lives. The cycle of poverty and negative effects of lack of education will be broken, and hope for a better future is within their reach. The love and compassionate support they receive from the staff and volunteers also provides the children with the nurturing they need to grow into emotionally healthy adults.
An example is one of the girls, Indra, who recently graduated with a B. SC. in Computer Science with Distinction and is now earning her Master's Degree.
Indra contracted polio when she was a young child and is confined to a wheel chair, but when meeting her it is her smile
and radiance that one remembers. Indra was the first child accepted at Prema Vasam many years ago and she has grown into a beautiful young woman inside and out. Click here for Indra's story, as told by Sevlyn Roy.
A beautiful example of empowered youth giving back to their own community
Indra has organized a tutoring program for poor children in the villages surrounding Prema Vasam. She and eight other young women from the orphanage work with local children in the evenings helping with homework, teaching English and encouraging their studies.
Prema Vasam is needs donations for: