Our newest CCI partner, Dreamland, is located in the state of Maharashtra, and its campus is spread over two acres of land. Surrounded by green farms and several small villages, this CCI is the brainchild of Mr. Suryakant Kulkarni and his wife, Mrs. Manik Kulkarni. After completing his Master’s degree, Mr. Kulkarni began working in the social development sector. In 1976, he and his wife formed the Socio Economic Development Corporation Trust (SEDT). In the beginning, Mr. and Mrs. Kulkarni faced some hardships due to lack of funds and resources, but their passion to help those in need and their generous hearts gave them hope. They started working with the surrounding villages – especially with the women – on creating awareness of the importance of education and sustainable livelihoods. Soon, they found themselves gaining the support of the community as villagers welcomed and accepted their initiatives. An organization that started as a one-room office, today SEDT is a thriving humanitarian organization running various projects in the surrounding communities.
It was in the early 1980s that the villagers from the surrounding areas first approached the Kulkarnis to seek advice for the welfare of the vulnerable children in their villages. In the quest to give these children a home to call their own and meet all their needs, the Dreamland CCI for boys was established. Dreamland began with only 15 children, and today is home to 63 children. Dreamland receives immense support from the locals and has a dedicated staff to take care of the boys. Some of the Dreamland staff has been working at the home for as long as 15 years. And a few of them have even been raised at the CCI and today work as staff members on Dreamland’s dedicated team.
Located in the interiors of Maharastra, the boys have had minimal access to the outside world. The Kulkarni family’s involvement in the running of the home and in the welfare of the children has been remarkable. Mr. Kulkarni eats his meals with the kids every day and has brought up incredible kids. A bunch of cricket fanatics, these boys are smart, positive, worldly and expressive. The boys respect the big and supportive family they have at Dreamland.
The boys are between 6-19 years of age. The campus at Dreamland has five rooms which accommodate 10-12 kids each. They also have an operational kitchen and dining hall, a temple on the campus and vast space for a playground.
Before Miracle’s support, Dreamland had a housemother to child ratio of 1:32, which will now be lowered to 1:20. The Kulkarnis run a school for the younger boys (up to class VII) and the older ones go to the Government school nearby. They also have an innovative Science Center which the children have complete access to.
Using our holistic approach, we are providing Dreamland with housemothers to create a loving, family environment. We are hiring an expert social worker to provide guidance and counseling to the children and housemothers. In addition, we are providing nutritious food, regular health checkups and vaccinations. Education interventions and life skills education will be implemented in order to empower each child.
We look forward to working with the incredible leadership, caregivers and children at this home, and we are thrilled to take you along on this journey as we nourish the hearts, minds and bodies of the precious boys at Dreamland!