After hurriedly having taken up a lonely seat in the bus, there was a sense of relief that I felt. Finally after all that waiting under the scourging sun, considering you feel like you are in an oven the moment you step outside the door. So here I was soaking in sweat but finally on my way to my Field Partner’s office, my Field partner being Prayas. The bus was filled with a cacophony of voices. One glare at everyone and you could see how dazzlingly diverse the state of Gujarat is. Ahmedabad, one of the fastest and largest growing metropolitan cities of Gujarat tends to be frantic yet friendly. And as soon as you step out of it, the incredibly diverse expanse of various cultural hues awaits for the traveler, as each city in this state is marked by its own peculiar tradition and language.So, after the 25 minute interesting bus ride, when I reached my destination being Adalaj, I couldn’t help but feel ecstatic. Having lived in a megacity all my life, getting to know and talk to all these people from various walks of life was already heightening my curiosity.Having reached the Prayas head office, I was greeted by a bunch of warm and friendly looking faces. Ms. Mamta Sangelia, the HR Manager talked at length about how things work at the organization.[caption id="attachment_3795" align="aligncenter" width="900"] With the team of Prayas at the head office[/caption]Prayas, one of the many field partners that Milaap is working with, is a voluntary development organization which was established in 1997. Having impacted as many as 14 areas and thousands of lives, Prayas has grown considerably over all these years. It strives to empower socio-economically deprived people through its various programmes.Later interestingly for lunch we headed to a place nearby the office which is being run by a foundation named as ‘Dada Bhagwan Foundation’. Ms. Mamta enlightened me by throwing light upon the subject of the foundation; how devoutly religious people are and how strongly they have faith in the man who started this foundation. The place was jam packed and bustling with people who had come from far of places in order to have their lunch there.[caption id="attachment_4004" align="alignnone" width="900"] The perpetually long queue for lunch[/caption]Mr. Bhadresh Raval, the director of Prayas, a highly spiritual being who is a also a strong follower said with a bright smile, “Its all about maintaining a balance between work-life and spirituality and approaching it in a holistic way.”With so much to look forward to, the only thing I couldn’t wait for any longer was my field visits and meeting the borrowers. Gujarat tends to outpace growth in terms of its booming entrepreneurial economy. But what stands as a stumbling block here is the other side wherein there are thousands of people who are in need of basic facilities such as water, education and sanitation. All one needs to do here is lend a little which will ultimately change a lot.
How kaleidoscopic is the land of Gujarat