This past month of February we had the chance to travel to Anantapur, India, for the inauguration of the dwellings that Grupo Ferrá has made possible through a partnership agreement with the Vicente Ferrer Foundation and also to find out more about the development programme that this non-governmental organisation is implementing there.
The project in India
We were actively seeking a solidarity initiative that was related to the Group’s action philosophy with the goal of thanking society for all the support we receive, and to also show that part of that support and of our customers’ trust in us can be transformed into opportunities for others. Thus, we took the decision to support the Habitat project of the Vicente Ferrer Foundation, enabling the construction of homes for families belonging to the most disadvantaged sections of the Indian society and facilitating their access to dignified living conditions in a tiny village called Kogira in the Madakasira region.
Our commitment has led us to get involved in this home building project as a way to empower women in India. In line with this goal, the Vicente Ferrer Foundation records ownership of these houses naming the women as registered owners in order to guarantee their right to continue living there indefinitely, thus preventing their eviction in case that they are abandoned by their husbands or become widowed, something which might seem obvious to us but that is not always the case in rural India.
Through this solidarity initiative we have participated in the building project of a colony in Kogira, and our contribution has consisted of providing three families with access their own house, which will protect them from high temperatures (which can sometimes reach 45ºC), from snake bites or scorpion stings, or from the monsoon season, for which purpose these houses have been built at a 60 centimetres elevation above ground level in order to prevent damage in case of possible torrential floods during the rainy season. Some of them are also adapted for disabled people.
The houses have been built with good lighting conditions, ventilation and the basic sanitary requirements. Water is manually collected from wells. Construction of this colony prevents the emigration of these families to large cities, where poverty becomes misery.
The Universal Declaration of Humans Rights sets forth in article 25 that everyone has a right to enjoy decent and adequate housing and with this initiative Grupo Ferra shows that we can all do our part in order to address this great challenge.
This initiative has been so positive that it spurs us in our desire to continue supporting this organisation, to walk hand in hand with them in their ongoing fight against extreme poverty, which is still a daily experience for too many people. We urge you to join us in the satisfaction that brings participating in a solidarity action. It’s important to remember that, as the Hindu thinker Mahatma Gandhi said: "The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world's problems".
The Vicente Ferrer Foundation has been working for nearly fifty years for the comprehensive development of the poorest and most disadvantaged communities of the Andhra Pradesh state. We encourage you to get to know them better and to try and find the most appropriate way in which you can cooperate with this foundation. You may find further information about them on the website www.fundacionvicenteferrer.org.
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