Shashi and Neelam Rajan have been serving the Lord in Pune since 1996. In 2006, some leprosy-affected people in Antulay Nagar asked for help at a box factory on the outskirts of Pune. This project fell apart in 2009, but a link with the leprosy-affected had been made.
Day Care Center
Also in 2006, Shashi and Neelam met a couple in Ghorpadi Gaon and started a prayer meeting in their home. The father was an alcoholic and his four children were suffering as a result. Shashi wanted to help them by putting the children in an orphanage, but a pastor suggested that they should start a Day Care Centre - and so they did. The center began has now grown to 35-40 children eaech day. Children are coached academically and also fed nutritiously.
Shining Light School
In June 2011, we started a nursery school in a rented building near the slum. There are 143 children now enrolled and they are receiving a good basic education in English. They are also learning Bible stories and singing Christian songs. The children taste the love of Christ and then talk about it to their parents. This has been so well received that we are being urged to ‘grow’ the school to cater to older children. We have also conducted four ‘parenting’ classes for their mothers – each attended by at least 60 parents.
Since April 2014, we have been ‘sheltering’ five street children, after they had been forced to leave their previous home. This was a totally unexpected development so we are seeking the Lord as to how to proceed next. As of now we have five children under our care.
Some of these children’s parents are unemployed and separated due to the husband’s unfaithfulness. Some make daily living, ocassionally, by selling balloons on the streets of Pune. The rest of the time they beg. Few have tried to get work on a daily wage basis, but often were was cheated and was never paid their full wages. One oft he children’s father is handicapped and mother unemployed. They make their seven children beg on the streets of Pune.
The Valve Company
The Valve Company which employs about 45 leprosy-affected workers approached us, in 2008, for help as they were bankrupt. We began to provide them with management and financial inputs. Turbocam donated them a brand new CNC Lathe machine in 2013.
However, lately, the commitee decided not to work with us anymore! We had invested time and payed the employees, monthly salary for past eight years.