I am in Sahiganj,….It was an incident that brought about the idea of establishing ‘Adarsh Seva Sansthan’ with a committed effort for the betterment of the slum dwellers situated around the brick-kiln areas of Swarnarekha river side in the outskirts of Jamshedpur industrial city. A day, while returning to house after completing the job at school on the way, Mrs. Prabha Jaiswal, a teacher-social worker by profession and the then president of Shramjivi Unnayan (NGO) saw an old lady lying with restless pain on the road after being seriously injured with an accident, no one was there to take the risk of helping her. Mrs. Jaiswal offered to drop her and escorted immediately to her house, which was in a nearby basti (slum). As soon as Mrs. Jaiswal entered into the basti area, she was appalled and horrified to see the unjust and unhygienic condition of that dwelling. The single-roomed houses were barely 3 ft. in height, one can’t imagine at once and call it as a ‘house’ for human being. The roads were narrow and stingy full of garbage and waste. The children were running around with tattled clothes. At house, the old woman didn’t possess utensils, not even a glass to drink water. Poverty and squalor were evident altogether. Mrs. Jaiswal was awestruck to see the whole picture of the basti, the people were absolutely ignorant of the outside world around them. Thus, an accident of an old woman became an incident for Mrs. Jaiswal that turned her to do something for the betterment of the people living in slum areas of brick-kilns in Jamshedpur.
Mrs. Jaiswal shared her feelings and experience to some like-minded individuals and bosom friends to intervene in these slums and thus ASES (from Hindi Literature, ‘means to reach’) an effort was brought about by this group of social activists with a mission to transform the lives of people living in ignorance and fringe of subsistence. In that way, the birth of ‘ASES’ or ‘Adarsh Seva Sansthan’ is cumulative effort of a group of dedicated people who were kindled by a desire to do something for the poor and neglected, came together to achieve the dream which would have otherwise remained as a dream forever. At the initial stage, ASES (to reach) or Adarsh Seva Sansthan got moral, professional and financial support from many NGOs and individuals for the upliftment of migrant labourers of brick-kiln dwellings. Finally, the group with the continued inspirational effort of Mrs. Jaiswal founded a unit with the name of ‘Adarsh Seva Sansthan’ at Sonari, Adarsh Nagar, Jamshedpur on 22nd March 1987 with the main objective to make the brick-kiln labourers aware of other ways of living and gradually bring them into the mainstream; secondly, to organize them and to enable themselves to fight against exploitation by the brick-kiln owners and Thirdly, to make the president of the organization active in SU’s work.
The name ‘Adarsh Seva Sansthan’ is a combination of the terms viz. ‘Adarsh’, ‘Seva’ and ‘Sansthan’ from hindi literature- ‘Adarsh’ means ideal, theoretical and standard of perfection or model which is ideally perfect, ‘Seva’ means to serve and ‘Sansthan’ is an institution, society or organization of people or group. Hence, the name ‘Adarsh Seva Sansthan’ literally means the Institution or Society which provides ideally perfect kind of services with right based approach for qualitative change among and within the underprivileged, needy, marginalized, exploited and vulnerable poor sections of the society. The institution, Adarsh Seva Sansthan (ASES) got registered itself as an autonomous and independent non-sectarian, non-political, non-profitable, non-government and humanitarian social society or unit under Societies Registration Act XXI, 1860 in 1991 with clear-cut socio-economic objectives for the development of the people, by the people and for the people. The organization has also registered under Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA), 1976 on 24th Jan 2005 (Registration No. 337820013).