Operation Shanti, a San Francisco, California-based nonprofit, was formally established in 2005 to help the poorest and neediest gain status and their rightful place in their societies.
Operation Shanti's first efforts in India were organized around helping families who were living on the streets of Mysore. Assistance was focused on basic needs – food and medical care. On a daily basis, Operation Shanti volunteers provided meals and medical assistance to those living on the street. This became Project Street.
Over the next two years, Operation Shanti began to provide housing and financial support for families, and educational opportunities for children so that they could go to school rather than work or beg in the streets. In 2006 and 2007, Operation Shanti placed several of the street children in a locally respected boarding school, getting them off the street.
In 2008, Operation Shanti opened the Karunya Mane shelter on the outskirts of Mysore to provide the street children with a permanent shelter. At their choice, many of the children who had previously been placed in local boarding schools came to live at Karunya Mane. The children live at Karunya Mane seven days a week and attend schools near the shelter. Other children have been placed at locally respected boarding schools. This is our Project Home.
In September of 2009, Operation Shanti began distributing care packages to destitute families affected by medical hardship, in what became Project Food & More.
Operation Shanti's future goals include the purchase of land and construction of a larger children's home near the Karunya Mane facility to assist more destitute kids who deserve a better life.
From its inception, Operation Shanti has partnered with locals working in the nonprofit sector in Mysore, including Swamiji of Cave Shiva Temple. Swamiji and other Indian locals make up the Indian board of directors, which advises and assists Operation Shanti on its local operations. An American board of directors focuses on fund raising and provides legal and administrative support for Operation Shanti.
How We Conduct Ourselves
- Believes that every human life is of equal value. We do not accept discrimination in any form.
- Treats everyone we work with and help as we would want to be treated.
- Gives a hungry person only food that we ourselves would also eat.
- Gives our employees and volunteers tasks that only we ourselves would also do.
- Refrains from imposing our belief systems on others.
- Takes action that reflects the long-term nature of our commitment.
- Is open-minded to change, improvement, innovation, and traditions that work.
- Takes responsibility for our actions, no matter what the consequences.