Schizophrenia Awareness Association (SAA) is located at Dhayari, Pune. It is a 4-storied building working for the part of the society which is often rejected, ignored and ridiculed due to their mental illness.
It is a registered NGO running exclusively on public funds, is working since last 20 years for mentally ill patients. They have taken the route of crowdfunding platform to raise funds.
Nilima Bapat, Secretary, SAA, said, “The society still carries a stigma about people who have mental illnesses and timely help & support is often unavailable making the person’s life worse. What is more alarming is that the percentage of people facing mental health challenges is increasing rapidly and lack of awareness is adding to the problem. There are hardly any NGO’s working to address this issue and their work is often restricted due lack of funds and support.”
The NGO has now approached a crowdfunding platform. The appeal that they have put on the online platform mentions that, ‘Facing all the challenges and obstacles, SAA has yet been proudly able to stand on its existing 4 floored building with the support by Dr Wani. The 4th floor of the building (SAA’s premise) is being given for use by K.S. Wani Trust, Dhule. They have also given us the auditorium (located on the same floor) for conducting educational and awareness programs regarding mental health.’
It further mentions that, ‘Apart from the above, the centre under rehabilitation program runs various activities such as stitching, weaving, catering, drawing, painting, computer, etc. Whenever there are electricity power-cuts, all our activities and thereby patients too get affected. Hence, we primarily need a generator back-up.
Secondly, our patient come from all parts of Pune and for them commuting to the centre is a major challenge, even though a minibus pick-up and drop is provided. We need a 17 seater bus for providing transportation services to patients.’
SAA has also produced Presidential award winning Marathi movie ‘Devrai,’ Majhi Goshta and couple of short films. SAA has Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) registration and 80-G Certificate. They have appealed for the help of 1, 00,000 rupees.