Mahatma Gandhi Seva Sangh (MGSS), NGO from Maharashtra has been awarded the Best NGO in India for its work in the empowerment of persons with disabilities for the year 2022 by the Department of Disabilities (Divyang), Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Govt. of India.
Mr. Vijay Kanhekar, Secretary, MGSS received the award on behalf of the organization at the hands of the Hon’ble President of India, Draupadi Murmu in the presence of Hon’ble Virendra Kumar, Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment, Govt. of India. MGSS President, Mr. Shashikant Deshpande, Chief Executive Officer, Ameya Agrawal, Development Director Devidas Kanhekar, Satish Nirmal, and Samruddhi Kulkarni represented MGSS during the award function.
Founded in 1994 in the small town of Parbhani, Maharashtra, MGSS has become an NGO of national recognition. MGSS provides health care, social services, educational services, and rehabilitation services to persons with different categories of disabilities through its 10 District Disability Rehabilitation Centres in Maharashtra and Goa.
MGSS works on multiple verticals, from grassroots intervention to serving as a Knowledge Partner to Maharashtra Government for Policymaking. Through its activities, MGSS addressed the entire lifecycle of disabled persons, right from prevention and intervention to socio-economic needs, and is also working in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Punjab, Bihar, and West Bengal.
As one of the most prominent implementing NGOs of ADIP Scheme by the Central Government, MGSS has also facilitated Mega Camps for the Free distribution of assistive devices to elderly people and Persons with Disabilities, benefitting over 100,000 people.
Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation is working closely with MGSS on the Early Detection and Early Intervention project for children with disabilities to bring them to the mainstream.
Under the National Hearing Mission MGSS facilitated state-wide assessment and distribution camps for hearing aids to 20,000+ people.
MGSS has conceptualized and implemented a project that mapped the socio-economic status of 50,000+ disabled individuals through a home-to-home survey of over 15Lakh people in the Akola district. The Akola Pattern has brought a new perspective to divyang rehabilitation by putting divyang at the center of policymaking, and this innovative project is now being replicated in Maharashtra.
MGSS is also an authorized dealer of the Artificial Limbs Manufacturing Corporation Of India (ALIMCO). Other verticals MGSS works on include Policy Designing & Implementation, Accessibility Audit Consultancy & Provisions, Survey, Research & Action Plan Development.
Mr. Vijay Kanhekar, Founding Secretary, MGSS, said, "We are committed to creating a society where people with disabilities no longer suffer discrimination, prejudice, and ignorance. MGSS is working for two decades serving divyang, but the work has just begun. The honor by the Govt. of India has increased our responsibilities towards improving the lives of people with disabilities and bringing them into the mainstream."
Mr. Ameya Agrawal, Chief Executive Officer MGSS, while talking to the correspondent, said "We are fortunate to have the guidance of our board members. We will work with more energy and are committed to giving more innovative projects to India. This award is dedicated to all our team members, patrons, stakeholders, associated organizations, divyangjan, and countless others who made this journey worthwhile."
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