CORD is a bond of love and understanding, encouraging a process of sharing which enriches both the giver and the receiver. ”
– Swami Tejomayananda World wide Head of Chinmaya Mission
CORD (Chinmaya Organization of Rural Development) is the service wing of Chinmaya Mission and operates as a Trust and NGO. It has been active in the field of holistic rural development for over two decades. It facilitates integrated, participatory and sustainable Rural Development in villages of Himachal Pradesh, Orissa, Tamil Nadu and Andhra through guidance, funding and monitoring. Today the holistic programme covers over 650 villages with over 5 lakh beneficiaries.
To harness human resources and enable the poor to transform their lives through programmes driven by themselves.
The beneficiaries of CORD programmes are the marginalized and poor villagers mainly women, poor and vulnerable families and weaker farmers group. Although the focus is around women, men, youth (boys and girls) and children’s groups separately, these groups also work in tandem with one another and together for issues that they prioritize in their local areas. Scheduled tribes and scheduled casts form a large part of the beneficiaries.
Registered under the Indian Registration Act with Income Tax Act 1961. Donations are exempted from Tax under Section 80G and Section 35AC of the Income Tax Act.
Registered under Section 6(1) of Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act ,1976. Elegible for receiving foreign donations
With a goal to work comprehensively for the betterment of society, Chinmaya Mission began to closely engage with rural communities in and around its Sidhbari Ashram in Himachal Pradesh, India. As a result of the laudable efforts of volunteers and the invaluable benefits to participating villagers and their families and communities, the Chinmaya Rural Primary Health Care and Training Centre (also known as "the Sidhbari Project") was established in 1985, with the blessings and guidance of Pujya Swami Chinmayananda.
There was no shortage of obstacles, however. Critical healthcare issues were inextricably intertwined with the harsh reality of rural India's poverty, illiteracy, and gender discrimination, all of which hinted at the formidable walls of social and economic disparities to be overcome.
The Sidhbari Project soon recharged and reshaped its approach to be more holistic and development oriented, focussing first on the empowerment of women. The Project took on, and succeeded in developing various training programmes that tackled hard-hitting issues like healthcare and nutrition, micro-banking and income generation, rehabilitation of specially-abled (not "disabled") children, and natural resource management.
In 2007, the Sidhbari Project alone covered nearly 500 villages, benefitting over 45,000 participating villagers and over 250,000 indirect beneficiaries.
In December 2003, in order to replicate the successful Sidhbari Project and administer such work at a national level, Swami Tejomayananda, Head of Chinmaya Mission Worldwide, constituted CORD, the Chinmaya Organisation for Rural Development,with its registered Headquarter in New delhi at 89 Lodhi Road. CORD welcomed into its fold related Mission projects that were already existing and burgeoning, and launched new, similar rural development projects in other parts of India. Headquartered in New Delhi, today's CORD is poised for a fuller realization of its objectives in the rural sector. Dr Kshama Metre, a paediatrician who has dedicated her life to the Mission and worked relentlessly for the Sidhbari Project is currently the National Director of CORD.
- To develop and strengthen a comprehensive, convergent, sustainable, and participatory rural development program.
- To empower rural women and youth.
- To help reduce poverty and increase economic self-reliance through micro-credit planning, income generation schemes, and village-level enterprise.
- To provide community-based healthcare through preventive and promotional measures, and provide primary healthcare services from dispensaries.
- To strengthen local self-governance.
- To create environmental awareness and implement natural resource management.
- To improve education standards and facilities, promote literacy, and offer value-based education.
- To promote and facilitate social justice.
- To empower men, women, youth, and children to uplift themselves and their communities by invoking their latent potencies.
- To network and collaborate with institutions, individuals, non-governmental organisations, governmental agencies, and donor agencies to reinforce and promote CORD objectives.
- To develop and conduct training programs for the fulfilment of all objectives.
CORD programs and activities have been inspired and formulated based on dynamic and vibrant interactions with thousands of villagers. CORD's strength and success has been due to its coalition with villagers, where there is cooperative effort to organise, build, and find relevant solutions to personal, familial, and communal concerns.
Mahila Mandals: Empowering Women
CORD's Mahila Mandals are village forums for rural women to discuss personal and economic concerns, and actively participate in common village interests and issues.
Yuvati Groups: Encouraging Self-Confidence in Young Girls
CORD's youth groups for girls are support groups that encourage education and trade skills development. Additionally, the teenage girls learn about adolescent health issues that are not openly discussed in their family or community.
Balwadis: Nurturing children
In rural settings, gender discrimination often forces girl-children to remain at home and help their mothers take care of their younger siblings. To remove this psychological block, CORD builds village intervention programmes centred around girl-children and initiates Balwadis, or nursery schools for children age 2-6 years, in villages. The Balwadi acts as the stepping stone for all children to continue their education thereafter in a regular school. In Balwadis, the young minds are exposed to spirituality, physical education, the alphabet, and numbers.
Children continue their academic education in a regular school and their spiritual and cultural education in Chinmaya Bala Vihar, which teaches children above 6 years of age. In these rural Bala Vihar classes, mothers are invited to attend with their children, and open discussions relating to children, women, and their immediate environment are promoted.
Fighting Social Injustice
To date, alcoholism remains a serious issue in many villages of India. Apart from deepening the levels of poverty from generation to generation, alcoholism promotes violence, especially domestic violence in the form of wife-beating and child abuse.
CORD helps villagers address alcoholism and other social injustices through informal legal counselling and victim support groups. The victims interact with the police and lawyers in a congenial, informal setting to get both, protection and justice, whenever required.
Yuva Groups: Channelling Energy Positively in Youth
CORD's Yuva groups provide a discussion and support forum for male youth and young adults to express, question, face fears, and voice concerns. This forum helps them turn away from the typical escape routes of alcohol, tobacco, and drug abuse.
Unemployment is the single, biggest challenge young boys in the rural sector face. In their Yuva groups, these youth learn about available trade skills and services they can learn in order to create a livelihood for themselves and better opportunities in, and for, their communities. This leads to harnessing youth potential for village development.
Self-Help Groups: Accessing Financial Resources
The concept of the Self-Help Group (SHG) was introduced in 1994 at Sidhbari, and its resounding success made it the new form of micro-banking in village communities. SHG organises the formation of a small voluntary association of not more than 20 poor people for the purpose of helping them solve their financial difficulties.
The women within the Mahila Mandals or the youth within Yuva groups then initiate the opening of a small-scale, group savings and loan account. SHGs not only help their members take care of each other's financial needs, but also help them learn and refine their skills of financial management, communication, and mediation.
CORD has trained and sensitized more than 20,000 bank officers, government and non-government officers, and organisational workers to promote SHGs, thereby making micro-banking available to the poorest of the poor.
Sustainable Income Generation for Women
Rural families earn their livelihood through multiple means. CORD offers a flexible approach to earning one's livelihood and encourages villagers in large numbers to leverage their aptitudes. CORD facilitates vocational training in diverse activities, including agriculture, dairy, petty shops, food products, fabrics (weaving, sewing, knitting, and embroidery), traditional painting and bamboo products. Ensuring self-reliance, building operational management, and mainstreaming the entrepreneurs into the local market are all integral processes in the services CORD provides.
Primary Healthcare Services
Doctors in outpatient clinics, village midwives, health guides, and community support groups are all employed by CORD to help promote good health and hygiene, and manage rural healthcare issues. Educating villagers of all ages on health and hygiene, recognizing the crucial role of midwives in isolated villages, and connecting villages to accessible medical services is an integral part of CORD's primary healthcare services. Specific healthcare issues promoted in all villages include immunization, family planning, nutrition, hygiene, and sanitation. Additionally, special attention and emphasis is placed on the prevention of various diseases, ranging from diarrhoea to AIDS.
Rehabilitation of the Differently-abled
The dignified inclusion and integration of the differently-abled (disabled) into village communities forms an important aspect of CORD's holistic vision. CORD's rehabilitation programme addresses the issues of accessibility, education, and self-employment for the differently-abled, and includes advocating proposals to local government policymakers.
Natural Resource Management
Over time, people the world over have developed a dangerous indifference to their environment and Mother Earth. CORD is motivating and training villagers to develop and implement micro plans to manage and sustain their natural resources. CORD's Natural Resource Management Training promotes and relates jal, jangal, jameen, jan, jaanvar, jeevika, and jeevan (water, forest, land, people, animal, livelihood, and life) as integral, interdependent factors for man's harmonious existence on Earth.
Strengthening Local Self-Governance
CORD's people-centred and people-driven programmes need participatory, not just representative, local self-governance. By strengthening the village democratic process through Upa-Graama Sabhaas and Graama Sabhaas (General Body Councils), CORD hopes to kindle the knowledgeable and sound participation of all villagers in making their immediate environment a world of harmony and humanity.
CORD has received funding from the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), Sir Ratan Tata Trust, Pentagon Charitable Trust, Grow Talent Company Limited, Abilis Foundation, NABARD, CORD USA and many individual donors.
You can help in any/all of the following ways: -
2. Fund Raising
3. Creating Awareness
4. Offering Professional services
CORD has been active in the field of holistic rural development for over 2 decades. To enhance the scope of this project and reach many more deserving areas funds are required..Your participation in CORD programme is vital for its sustenance and growth.You can support any particular programme/activity or generally contribute to all aspects of CORD programmes.
Donations can be sent by cheque/ draft payable to "CORD" and mailed to CORD Headquarters in New Delhi. Online donations can be given at cord website www.cord.org.in. For Bank transfer please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
All donations are now exempted from Tax under Section 80G (50%) and Section 35AC (100%) of the Income Tax Act 1961.. Also registered under Section 6(1) of the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act of 1976.
About the Orphanage
Chinmaya Vijaya, a non-political, non-government all girls orphanage, is founded by Drs. Sumathi and Appa Rao Mukkamala as a tribute to Pujya Gurudev Swami Chinmayananda, who dedicated his entire life in the service of mankind.
With the blessings of Pujya Guruji Swami Tejomayananda, Head of Chinmaya Mission Worldwide, Chinmaya Vijaya was formed in early 2007 under the auspices of CORD. Chinmaya Vijaya is specifically committed to the care of orphaned and homeless girls in order to provide them with a family, a home, and a strong foundation to lead an independent and secure life.
This project has been made possible through the generous donation of five acres of land by the family of Lingamaneni Bhaskara Rao in Kaza Village, Andhra Pradesh, and by monetary donations from the family and friends of the Mukkamalas and devotees of Chinmaya Mission Worldwide.
To embrace any orphaned girl child in the 5-7 year age group, irrespective of her caste, colour, creed, or ethnicity, and to raise her as our own, providing her with food, shelter, clothing, education, and health care.
- To adopt 200 girl orphans.
- To give the children a home and a stable living environment
- To create strong and dependable relationships among them so that they live in a safe, home-like atmosphere.
- To inculcate and encourage bonding and belongingness with one another.
- To look after their health and well-being.
- To provide education, recreation, and create other such facilities for all-round self-development.
- To imbibe in them social values, bring them up with self-respect and as moral and responsible citizens.
- To prepare them to face life independently by providing them with professional and/or vocational training.
- To absorb them into the social mainstream and help them, if they choose, with the completion of their education, employment, and/or marriage.
"A word or deed that gives solace and comfort to the heart is worthy of billions in wealth". This philosophy holds true in Chinmaya Vijaya. Generous donations from all like-minded individuals and organizations are accepted, acknowledged, and utilized to further this genuine cause.
Interested persons may sponsor a child by completing and submitting the Sponsorship Form. All contributions are tax-deductible. Click on the link to download the form.
Article in The Hindu - July 22, 2011: The Village Doctor
2nd Floor, Chinmaya Mission
89, Lodhi Estate
Tel: +91-11-24616291, 9899107730
Contact : Ms.Mona Malkani(Co-ordinator Headoffice)
CORD Training Centre Sidhbari
Village and Post Office, Sidhbari,
Himachal Pradesh - 176 057, India
E-mail: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
Tel: +91-1892-234322, 236987, 098166 55592
Contact: Dr.Kshama Metre(National Director, CORD)
Chinmaya Nagar Chowk
Lathikata 770 037,Sundergarh Dist
Contact: Swami Kevalananda(Project Director)
Keonjhar Dist 758 019
Contact:Dr.Sarojbala Rath(Project Co-ordinator)
Sarveshwara Dhyana Nilayam
Tamaraipakkam 601 103, Thiruvallur Dist
Tamil Nadu, India
Contact:P. N. Kannan (Project Director)
Chinmaya Vijaya Orphange
Mangalgiri Mandal –522 503
Andhra Pradesh, India
Contact: Dr.Mukkamala/Raju Mantena
4/109, Boluvampatti main Road,
Coimbatore 641 109
Tamil Nadu, India
Contact:Dr. Meera Krishna