Q: Where does your passion and love for community come from? You mentioned your family played a major role, but what was your personal need to get involved at a deeper level?
I can’t take credit for the founding philosophy of GRAVIS, because I was very young at the time. The founders believed that people are often not taken into account when programs are developed, and that may still be the case today, but the situation has changed and it must keep changing. It is a dynamic process. People need to be consulted. People need to be given the confidence that they are equal and important partners in what is being done for them.
There are always strong representatives in communities, who do not allow others to come forward, like women, the deprived, the lower caste groups, and those with disabilities. Therefore, it is important that inclusive community-based organizations are given training and capacitybuilding tools, so that everyone can contribute. Equality and solidarity are principles of the GRAVIS philosophy, and they are derived from Mahatma Gandhi’s approach to India’s development.
Q: How has Covid-19 affected GRAVIS’s work, and how did you stay connected with people in the areas you work?
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