The mission of Divya Shanthi Christian Association and Trust is to work with economically poor and socially excluded familes and support them in the education of their children and in their efforts to improve their quality of life.
Who we are:
Divya Shanthi is a community motivated by the love the Lord Jesus Christ and called to express it in serving those in need.
The vision of Divya Shanthi is communities where justice, freedom, economic inclusion and flourishing, human dignity, religious harmony and sustainable environments flourish and contribute to nation building.
Our programs include high school, open school, school for special needs, learning centers, credit and savings groups, vocational training centers, adult literacy, health care and awareness, clinics and camps, supporting victimes through advocacy and counselling, community organisation, legal support, housing and environment, development in business and micro enterprise, co-operative society and spiritual growth.
Our support partners are both local and international. Our main support groups are Divya Shanthi Mission Support Organisation (DSMSO), Oxford, UK and Barnabas Aid International, UK.
OUR HISTORY AND OVERVIEW
Divya Shanthi Christian Association and Trust
It began with 'The Sunshine Hour Saturday Club' for poor children in the deprived area of Lingarajapuram, North Bangalore, India in May 1967. Colleen Samuel (Philipsz) began the work soon after she came to know Christ as her Lord and Saviour. The work picked up when Colleen and Vinay Samuel returned from Cambridge UK in 1975. Vinay developed the outreach congregation of St. John's Church of which he was presbyter in charge in Lingarajapuram. It later became Divya Shanthi Church. The work in the community with families particularly women and children was developed under Colleen with a team of volunteers and by 1982 it became the Divya Shanthi Christian Association and Trust. In 1978 a primary school for children. In 1979 a tailoring unit was started. Volunteers operated a counseling unit for employment, marital problems and a variety of family needs. In 1980 a health service also began with volunteers. Till 1982 the work developed with local support.
In 1982, the first home for girls at high risk was started with the support of Redt Een Kind, Holland. The community work programme of adult literacy, community health education and care, pre school children, non formal training for youth and micro enterprise development began in 1984 with the help of Tear Fund Holland. The work has grown to cover six areas in the radius of 25 Kms from Lingarajapuram which became part of City Corporation in 2004. A children's home was started in Hyderabad in 1987 and Tsunami Rehabilitation work in Tamil Nadu in 2005 The number of very low income families we work with is over 5000. Divya Shanthi has full time staff strength of over 150. Pioneering volunteers like Prema and John Santosh, Thelma Dawson and Lily Philips continue to be part of the governance team which include business person and community leaders