Mohan Rao Dasari
The Director, Mr. Mohan Rao Dasari has been working with several NGOs and Networks since 28 years in the state of Andhra Pradesh. He has worked five years with a UK charity (2001-2006) to monitor and evaluate street children projects in south India. Post Tsunami in 2005 he worked with a Mumbai based Trust to freely fit mobility aids especially artificial limbs to 900 disabled people. He is well acquainted with management trainings such as ‘Result Based Management’ for NGO leaders and grassroots workers.
- We are a third generation Christian family in an area where Christianity took note among 'lower caste' people because it offered them a religion that actually acknowledged they were existing and a religion that would break the cycle of fearful re-incarnation. When I write poverty it means that on the death of my father unexpectedly died in 1984, my mother went out to work as a 'road laborer'. In a very religious sense we say 'it was a God sent' that applied to my older brother and myself being admitted into a small Christian Orphanage.
- The Home that I was in, knew very well from close association with a close friend of theirs that 'Leprosy' was curable. However the stigma of it rarely changed. Some 'patches' on my right cheek were identified as Leprosy. I was kindly, but firmly and discreetly taken to a Home where it was known that they fully accepted children with this disease. In 1989 at Hoina Leprosy Research Trust in Orissa, I received multidrug treatment (MDT) and am cured totally without deformity. I have advocated more use of the medical definition of 'Hansen's Disease' as against the still stigmatized word of 'Leprosy'.
- While taking the medicine, it also meant that I had the opportunity after 10th standard to work for the organisation. Later on I have studied Bachelors Degree at prestigious Mrs AVN College, Visakhapatnam. As all these things came into my life I knew no fear because I believed that if I am faithful, I would have insight to God′s plan. No 'luck' no 'good opportunity' just simple explicit silent faith. The Degree including Civics, Economics and Commerce was not easy! The Director of the Trust gave me tasks and as I completed, each one became more serious to ensure timely and caring for projects. I soon learnt the word responsibility and integrity and endurance to achieve an aim for a positive outcome.
- While staying with HLRT Home I had my first experience in meeting and living with children that came by a life living and begging on railway station platforms. Many of the children from the platforms became my close friends. It gave me insight to their problems.
- Out of the ten odd years that I spent with the organisation I gained not just training to be a capable project implementer and manager, but a number of direct project responsibilities and experiences. The Director made me aware that there were no short cuts. Compassion and help was not just a component of a project but it was an act taken from the instructions by Jesus - when I was hungry, thirsty...
- Three year's preparing and presenting the monthly reports of the Children's Home programmes in Andhra Pradesh. This involved monitoring both the financial cost and the 'care level' of children being looked after. People said I was Mr. RBM. They would say 'Here comes RBM' - Result Based Management, a logical framework analysis.
- Following the Orissa Super Cyclone in 1999 I was involved in setting up the post cyclone 'Stayput' programmes on railway stations. It would take a 'chapter' to explain that challenge and some of the children that came out of it are still in contact with me. I saw not to be thought of post scenes of the super cyclone. Similar experiences and offered support to the victims of the 2001 Gujarat Earthquake and 2004 Tsunami. While working for these victims, a permanent Limb Centre was established at NRI General Hospital, Chinakakani.
- I came up with a multi language Manual because we worked across five languages in south east and development of the `Child to Child` concept into the programmes. (Older child being care person of younger child.
- Monitoring and Reporting for the HIV/AIDS project that covered the Gunupur Sub-Division of Rayagada District, Orissa including all schools. The monitoring position was for two years. The size and scope of this work made me aware of the 'in-depth' seriousness of management.
- Management of the Govt. of Andhra Pradesh state AIDS Cell programmes in Vizianagaram District for one year. This included planning, implementation and reporting of the work carried out.
Seminars and Training:
- I am a promoter of the concept of changing the name of 'Leprosy' to Hansen's disease to bring about a lower stigmatisation problem. I have attended a number of workshops (IDEA, New Delhi & The Leprosy Mission, Jamshedpur) on this and presented papers at same. The first paper I presented kind of stunned people so to say. I was 22 years old and explained to them 'I am a cured leprosy person..' A person said later that I had 'tenacity' and I now understand that working is a much needed skill.
- A fundraising workshop runs by the South Asia Fund-raising Group for six days in Hyderabad.
- Project Planning and Management training, at Cenderet, Bhubaneswar for seven days. These experiences I still use today. These are few to mention but Jesus being a ‘potter’ (Isaiah 64:8) mold me as a useful tool.
- In January 2000 I decided to take all of this background THEORY and PRACTICAL EXPERIENCE and with my wife started an organisation, HEARTS (Health, Education, Awareness, Rehabilitation and Treatment Society) and in recent years merged title as `Hearts Foundation`. It took a lot of prayer and waiting for a sense of receiving His guidance and established a Shelter Home for Street Children in Guntur, Andhra Pradesh.
- In June 2001, I had the opportunity to work part time as a Co-ordinator for a UK charity. This involves visiting, reporting of the funded NGO partners and monitoring child care. This position was for six years and I had the opportunity to visit U.K.
- Later on in 2009 with support of an Irish scientist I have built a Children Home in Bapatla. It was a onetime grant and regular maintenance support was raised by late Miriam Van Duuren from Pemberton, Australia. Miriam was a spiritual inspiration. A woman who worked at the same time as I did in the 1999 Orissa Cyclone. Nothing daunted her. She was with me when I was baptized – my Christian name Moses Andrew. Miriam was an extraordinary person with great love for Jesus and lived her life teaching Gospel. For many years she runs Sunday Schools in Pemberton. At the age of 80 she died of Cancer.
- Hugh Copeland from Pemberton was supporting our work along with his friend Colin Knight and several other supporters and sponsors. He used to visit the children home almost every year for 15 years. He died of Cancer this year – March 2022.