Maher means "Mother's Home" and is a haven of hope, belonging and understanding. Our mission is to help destitute women, children and men from all over India exercise their right to a higher quality of life, irrespective of gender, caste, creed or religion. Today, Maher operates out of three states in India (Maharashtra, Jharkhand and Kerala) and has 39 homes (29 children's homes, 7 women's homes, 2 men's homes) providing shelter to more than 862 children, 300 women and 57 men. Maher also has a network of 500 village self-help groups with 10,000 members. The organization was a complementary attendee at the 2015 Clinton Global Initiative and its founder received the prestigious Nari Shakti Award from India's President in March 2016.
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Gaus was just 8 years old when a Maher social worker spotted him working as a child laborer washing cars in a garage. It was one of two jobs he held to help support his mother, disabled father, grandmother and siblings. When Gaus returned that evening, it was the first time he had ever seen a vehicle in front of the family's one room home. Inside he found Maher Founder Sr.Lucy talking with his parents about sending Gaus to Maher so he could go to school. Gaus, who dreamed of going to school as a child, recently received a MBA degree. He was one of 16 young people to spend two weeks with the Pres. and Vice Pres. of India and was voted "best leader" by his peers. Gaus is currently spending his second consecutive summer in the U.S., where he will facilitate Peace Camps and work with other youth leaders and activists.
Check out this blog to learn how a tech Experteer worked alongside Maher Ashram to use technology to empower vulnerable populations across India.