The Second Vatican Council explicits the vision of the Church: The Church is the People of God and every member of the Church has to play a role in evangelization. Evangelization means bringing the Good News into all the strata of humanity. Evangelization transforms humanity from within and making it new. In today’s context, the sum and substance of evangelization is “You shall love the Lord your God with whole heart and with whole soul, with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself” (Luke 10:27). Msgr. Augustian Kandathil, a priest of Ernakulum Angamaly Archdiocese, who was working in Canada, was impressed by the speech of Pope Paul V1 during his visit to Bombay in the year 1962 and gave birth to a family development programme, called Save A Family Plan, for extending helping hand to the poor and downtrodden in India. He realized that family being the basic unit of the society, empowering family is the first step to empower the society. His main aim was to meet the basic needs of the poor families and encourage them to move toward self reliance. The overall goal of SAFP is to encourage, capacitate and support to the poor target families to move towards self reliance in order to become full contributing members of their local community.
Save A Family Plan is a family development programme initiated in Canada, operated through financial assistance from donors and have been implemented in collaboration with local partner organizations in different regions. TSSS is one among the 40 partner NGOs in India. The overall goal of SAFP is to encourage, capacitate and support to the poor target families to move towards self reliance in order to become full contributing members of their local community, thereby, ensuring them to lead a dignified life. Identified Poor families from the less privileged sections of the society is its target group. TSSS implement the Family Development Programme ( FDP ) of SAFP in 3 coastal region- Angengo, Kovalam and Thoothoor. At the organizational level two teams – Family Facilitation Team ( FFT ) and Family Action Team ( FAT ) were constituted for effective planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the programme.
GENERAL OBJECTIVE OF THE PROGRAMME
Enabling the ‘poorest of the poor’ families for their overall development through promoting and strengthening economic and social development initiatives and there by leading to the formation of a sustainable and healthy society. Partnering with the poor for a just world is the mission of family development programme. Its vision is to meet basic needs of poor families and to encourage them to move towards self reliance in order to become full and contributing members of their local community. In the Archdiocese of Trivandrum Save A Family Plan project began in 1972. So far the project has brought around 4000 families to self reliance. With the assistance of adequate support families are able to build a sustainable income for themselves. Regular training is given to the family on different topics to help them make choices that improve their standard of living. They learn to make a plan and budget for the 6 years, which help them to accomplish the goals they set for themselves. We help them identify and access government resources through local bodies that are available for them. They are encouraged to take part in the local bodies to promote change within their larger community. At the end of the 6 years, the family reach a position to learn essential skills for everyday life and to become happy and confident to move ahead in life. Moreover, they become empowered to teach other families these skills and develop them into thriving communities. We give priority to the women headed families.
Benefactors visit to our organization helped us to convince the effectiveness of our project activities and helped them understand the realities from field observations and discussion with the beneficiary families. The SAFP Canada executive Director Mrs. Lesly and president Ms. Loas visited our NGO and had a discussion with our Arch bishop and evaluated the programme. They also visited a few beneficiary families. Considering our good performance they offered to support the diocese for a housing project of 50 houses as a token reward.