Mr. Mahesh Panpalia, a young aspirant, formed DHARA Sansthan, Society for Development Health Hygiene and Rural Action, in 1989. Despite being from a well-known family and being the son of an academician, he opted to serve the people through social principles and tactics. Emerging as a young aspirational person who only wanted to work for the welfare of the people was not his cup of tea back then. Nonetheless, despite numerous obstacles, he chose the road of voluntarism.
In the early stages of the organization, in the 1990s, Mahesh and his small-scale team would work voluntarily and solely for various programmes in his region, which expanded his passion even more, and he began his career in the social developmental field with the Health Care programme in 2005.
In contrast, in 2006, Barmer was devastated by a severe flood that nearly overwhelmed the entire rural area, and during this difficult period, he was able to extend his social help to the affected households through the Drought Mitigation in Thar Project. This was a stepping stone for him, strengthening his hold on the field, and the benefits didn’t stop there.
He has conducted several surveys, and based on the dire needs of the people and the geographical condition of Rajasthan, he has worked to establish several water reservoir projects in hard-to-reach regions of Barmer, Jaisalmer, Jalore, and Jaipur blocks, allowing many people to fetch water in their villages without difficulty.
Throughout the years, his voluntary support and investment in society has impacted thousands of lives, and in 2010, DHARA Sansthan was able to expand its reach to the most isolated hamlets of the Barmer district with mobile health van provision, and it has impacted millions of lives in both Rajasthan and Gujarat.
He has also worked diligently with several other segments such as child protection, where the ratio of child marriages and trafficking has been reduced in the operational areas covered.
Rural women’s lives are also being touched by women’s entrepreneurship programmes, which are assisting them in starting their own businesses. As a result, women have felt emboldened by it, allowing them to breach traditional norms and taboos.
Dhara Sansthan hasn’t only worked with the projects but it has also built individual then, who has now emerged as great personalities and leaders uplifting the society and nation.