India is the second most populous country in the world after China and holds the largest share of the world’s extreme poor.
A third of India’s 1.2 billion population live on less than £1 a day; a figure in stark disagreement with the country’s reputation for boasting a booming economy.
Almost 70% of the population live in rural areas meaning many communities lack sufficient health services, education and sanitation, making them more vulnerable to diseases.
India claims the majority of leprosy cases globally. Last year 63% of the world’s 214,000 newly diagnosed leprosy cases were in India and it is estimated that two million more are living with the long-term effects of the disease.
Prejudice against people with leprosy still persists in India. There are over 17 laws which discriminate against people with leprosy, such as leprosy being grounds for divorce and people visibly disabled by leprosy are prevented from travelling on trains.
We work in seven regions of India including Seema Andhra and Telangana (formerly Andhra Pradesh), Jharkhand, Odisha (formerly Orissa), Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and New Delhi, some of which are the poorest and most populous states in the country.
In areas where government services are lacking, we fill the gaps so that people do not resort to seeking treatment from unqualified and unregulated village ‘doctors’ and traditional healers.
We also work in collaboration with the government, national and international organisations to ensure people have access to good quality healthcare and are not discriminated against because of diseases, disability or poverty.
You can find out more information about some of our specific projects in India by clicking the link below: