Gravis, an India-based NGO, aims to empower rural communities through community development programs in health, education, humanitarian relief, agricultural and supporting economic development. Their core philosophy is Sarvodaya—all rising, but the last person first.
Gravis promotes integrated sustainable development by emphasising the empowerment of rural communities, enabling villages to take ownership of their environment, institutions and their relationships with others.
Their key objectives are
- integrated development for all, regardless of caste, religion or sect
- better health behaviours
- Sustainable development of natural resources
- conservation and development of village commons.
- improvement of education, with particular emphasis on educating girls.
- promotion of financial savings at the individual, group, and community levels to reduce dependence on outside capital
- empowerment of village communities to reduce economic and social disparity and to create a self-reliant and decentralised community system
- coordination of training programs to teach youth, women and field workers how to implement strategies of integrated development within their own communities
- generation of awareness among rural communities, particularly the poor, so that underprivileged groups can benefit from development schemes.
- research projects to explore more effective development programs and improve community participation.
- provision of humanitarian relief during calamities and other emergencies.
- organisation of campaigns and people’s movements on social issues, in accordance with Gandhian ethics.
- cooperation with partner organisations sharing similar objectives.
- encouragement of mutual respect.
Spirit of Humanity Award, 2011