the expressive kannada language, "Odanadi" is one who walks
hand in hand with you through life's long journey: a mate,
a friend, for all seasons. And translating this fine ethos
of human bonding into action among the prostituted and destitute
in Karnataka is the Odanadi Seva Samsthe.
1984, Odanadi's founding fathers, Stanly-Parashu, along
with a handful of friends, chose Mysore to spearhead a full-blooded
struggle against the harsh socio-economic and cultural forces
affecting the poorer women in Indian society. These vulnerable
women-women-from poor households, slums, villages and even
distant tribal hamlets-were found living in a twilight zone
along with their children, traumatized and forgotten.
then, Odanadi Seva Samsthe's pioneering efforts to empower
and rehabilitate these sexually exploited women and children,
and the organizations' relentless fight to expose and curb
flesh trade, has spread statewide.
Now, at the turn of the new millennium, the Odanadi threesome-Stanly-Parashu
and Anuradha Polanki Ramamurthy-have emerged as a leading
and powerful voice, advocating the cause of these prostituted
women in India.
"Justice to the neglected and empowerment of the weak" and
"Equality of opportunity to all" are the cornerstones of
Their main objectives are
To organize the prostituted into a vocal group fighting
against the exploitation, and facilitate their empowerment
To integrate the children of exploited women into the main
stream and make them self-reliant through counseling, education
and vocational training.
*To prevent women and children from being drawn into the
*To assist in the prevention of rural-urban migration, which
is a major contribution to urban prostitution. ·
*To combat the HIV/AIDS epidemic and provide care to the
*To expose human right violation against women and children
in all sections of society. ·
*To provide support to women and children affected by domestic
violence and other socio-economic problems.
*To combat child labor with groups like CACL (campaign
against child labour)
and achievements of Odanadi:
Prior to starting Odanadi, Stanly-Parashu undertook a ten-month
pilot study ("Bodies for a meal") of the socio-economic
conditions of prostituted women and their children in Mysore
district. OSS emerged as a registered trust in 1992 to be
the "Odanadi" of the ravaged group of the society. In its
attempt to achieve its stated goals, Odanadi has surmounted
numerous hardships from various mainstreams segments. Happily,
most of its objectives have borne fruit and the organization
has emerged as a pioneering entity, setting standards for
the welfare of the victims of this century old vice.
Rescued as many as 145 young girls, most of them are minors,
from the clutches of the flesh traffickers in various parts
*With a special focus on Mysore, Odanadi has gone a long
way in eradicating the social stigma attached to the prostituted
and in sensitizing the mainstreams of society. As many as
22 women were married through widely published exercise
in the presence of leading personalities.
*Organized the prostituted into a vocal and powerful group,
the Vimochana Mahila Sangha, the Mysore group being the
strongest with 1020 members.
*As many as 350 women have been rehabilitated with alternative
livelihood in the mainstream society.
*Established a very successful and lauded permanent residential
school and rehabilitation center ("Prayoga Patha") for the
children of the exploited women in 1995 in partnership with
CRY (Child Relief and You). So far, the school has provided
shelter and education to more than 60 children. As of December
2000, the school had strength of 48 children.
*Odanadi operates a counseling and trauma care center for
women of various strata afflicted by martial discord and
enters the new millennium with a clear perception of the
unfinished tasks that lie ahead. Goals for the first decade
aim at strengthening the infrastructure and care systems
needed to address this challenge both at the state and national
has its doors open always for any assistance, be it in cash
or kind, and all gestures will be remembered with gratitude.
If you would like to support Odanadi on a regular basis
you can send your donations to-
S. R. S. Colony, Hootagally Village,
Belawadi Post, Mysore,
Mysore District, Karnataka, India-571186.
Telephone numbers: 0821 402155
Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
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