India Today has been reporting India's
society, its triumphs and its despair, over the past 25 years.
It was during the Kargil conflict of 1999 that simple reporting
wasn't enough. Whenever stories of disasters were published,
offers for help from readers came flooding in, but there was
never an opportunity to properly tap this wellspring of goodwill.
So on August 1999, the India Today group set up CARE TODAY,
a registered society. It's mandate is simple: use
from readers of India Today to address problems, and report
back on the progress made through the pages of the magazine,
and now through this web site.
Encouraged by the overwhelming response for the Kargil
project, CARE TODAY then launched the Hope for Orissa
fund after a supercyclone devastated that state. Contributions
for both funds topped Rs one crore and are now closed,
though rehabilitation work continues apace.
When a supercyclone ravaged Orissa
in October 1999, women and children were perhaps among the
worst sufferers. Not only did they have to suffer the trauma
of being homeless, they also had to suddenly fend for themselves,
essentially struggle desperately just to stay alive. Hundreds
of orphans alone were roaming Orissa, confused, alone and
It was in this grim situation that CARE TODAY decided to begin
"Hope for Orissa", a project to resettle orphans and widows
of the supercyclone. Appeals made to readers in INDIA TODAY
saw a tremendous response over the months. Finally, after
collections crossed Rs one crore in April 2000, the "Hope
for Orissa" fund was closed. This of course does not mean
rehabilitation work has stopped. If anything it is increasing
in pace as more funds are disbursed through the best volutary
agencies working on the ground in Orissa.
Unlike the Kargil project, the enormity of the damage was
so vast that CARE TODAY did not do the rehabilitation directly.
Instead it was--and is--routed through the best voluntary
agencies in the field.
CARE TODAY presently supports a project to construct cyclone-proof
individual houses for 100 of the women who were widowed in
the cyclone is underway. So far, 77 women have been identified
for receiving a house, and construction work has begun for
29. The women are currently residents of Mamta Gruhas, or
temporary shelter homes, in their villages. These homes are
run by Actionaid, with support from the state government.
Once they move into their own homes with their children, with
a clear title to the land on which the house is upon, they
will be better placed to rebuild their shattered lives.
CARE TODAY also supports an SOS Children's Village in Bhubaneshwar
for the food, clothing, education and health expenses of 131
orphans from the cyclone based with them. We are also looking
at ways and means of supporting those orphans who are currently
residents of the Mamta Gruhas and will need support over the
CARE TODAY will keep you updated on these and future projects
as they get underway.
Hope for Orissa - 1999
Care Today thanks all donors for their contributions.
This project is closed and we are not seeking donations for this project.
Using total donations of Rs. 1.25 crore we supported the following projects.
Support to 150 children
Construction of houses of 100 widowed women
Construction of 23 cyclone shelters.