A word from our Founder
While working with Kayakalpa in the Red Light Area of Budhwar Peth, Pune, I came close to several problems in the life of FSWs. Among all problems one problem that moved me to the core –‘Children of FSWs’- who often remain ignored and neglected by the government policies, educational institutions, and from the mainstream society.
The experiences I had while working with Kayakalpa enabled me to expand and enlarge my horizons of work by looking at the pitiful state of the children of the sex workers. The journey of Seema’s project –Step Towards Life began.
While working at KEM Hospital , Mrs Seema Waghmode happened to treat a leprosy patient who remained neglected and uncared by all the other nurses due to fear of transmission of the disease. Seema’s attitude and sensitivity to refuse any such barriers deter her in caring for this patient. She carried out her duties to the best of her ability without once thinking of any of the adverse consequences.
Seema joined NGO Alert India, Mumbai working for cause of Leprosy. In 11 years of service with Alert India she rehabilitated and reintegrated over 5,000 Leprosy patients from rural areas. She actively worked with Maharashtra State, Department of Health to implement various schemes to benefit Leprosy patients and their families.
In early nineties with the rapid spreading of AIDS, Seema decided to found a not for profit NGO to focus on HIV/AIDS. She formed Kayakalpa , the first NGO in Pune district to focus on HIV/AIDS. Kayakalpa office is in located in Budhwar Peth , heart of Pune City red-light area.
Over the due course, Seema experiences the most horrifying aspect of Sex trafficking industry which is children of Sex workers have no option but to watch their mothers in the ‘act’ as they provide ‘services’ to clients. Kayakalpa along with YMCA Pune opens a day & night care facility in heart of the red-light area to protect , feed , educate kids of CSWs.
Mr. Bill Gates along with his wife Melinda, daughter and father met Seema at Kayakalpa facility to discuss vital issues related to Sex trafficking industry and it’s economic , social and health consequences.
Full time care of children was passed to Rev Haribhau Waghmode Patil Pratishthan (RHWPP). The RHWPP trust is named after father of Mr. Shirish Waghmode , husband of Mrs Seema Waghmode, the respected Mr. Haribhau Waghmode Patil who spent his entire life as a Social worker.
Seema and her husband Mr. Shirish Waghmode realized that the kids need to be moved away from anti-social environment. A five acre piece of land was acquired in Bori village (100 kms from Pune) for Child Development Centre. Representatives from ‘The Free to Live Trust’ ,Scotland provide major funding for the 6500 Sq fts new facility at Bori village.