He was constantly worried about people back home and went back to see that the children roamed the streets, starving and unaware of anything that was out in the world. “When I was in Pune around in 2014, I gave free tuitions to children from the slums around where I lived. However, those kids had to move away and I felt I could have done much more for them,” Deshmane said.
With this spirit, he started his NGO, Snehwan in December, 2015. As a part of it, he decided to adopt kids from Marathwada belonging to families in which the farmers have committed suicides. Some of these kids are also from families who are in debt and are having a hard time providing for themselves. "I felt if I had the will I would find the way. I began working night shifts, and for 8 months I continued to work towards setting up this shelter. A friend of mine gave away his old house of 4 rooms for the children to live in, and I got Snehwan registered. However, the night shifts began affecting my health.” So by August 2016, he quit his full-time job and dedicated himself to give quality education to the children.
He has identified 25 such kids from various districts of Maharashtra and provides accomodation to them at a donated apartment in Bhosari area of Pune. “If you want the next generation of farmers to do something substantial in the near future, it is necessary to educate them. And just basic education is not enough. Teaching them various subjects like computer science, music, dance, painting, etc is needed. It is required that children are taught according to their talents,” says the 29-year-old who has completed his Masters in Computer Science.
Deshmane got married in November 2016, and his wife Archana was more than happy to know about his cause and contribute to it. She cooks meals regularly for the one large family they have and is like a mother to them.
“My kids call my parents ‘Ajji’ and ‘Ajoba’, meaning grandmother and grandfather in Marathi. My father, in fact, teaches the students how to play tabla,” Deshmane said.
Deshmane and his wife are now looking to increase the size of their family by bringing in more and more children to their little haven near Pune. “But for that, we are also looking for a land around that is affordable and has a larger place to shelter more and more kids by the year. Having seen the same poverty they have, I want them to learn more and most of all, become better human beings.”
Your support will help bring light to many more children of draught affected farmers who are deprived of a better future because of lack of education.