ABOUT US

NavJan envisions to be a transformative and collaborative agent in North East India for the formation of a just society built on love, peace and harmony.

NavJan strives to transform the people of North East India through interventions aimed at integrity of creation, promotion of human life and dignity with a special focus on the people on the margins, adopting key strategies of prophetic service to the end, community building, networking, advocacy and ethical lobbying with governmental and non-governmental agencies of social transformation. Less View.

1. Transform the People of Northeast India
Back Home

“NavJan” as a People Empowerment Trust is the social-developmental face of the North-East Independent Delegation (NEID). It is to transform the society based on Christian values and principles, as “Salt of the earth” and “Light of the world." NavJan will work strenuously to make its vision a reality, through its strategic planning of its activities of the Mission, to the whole people of the Northeast region, especially those who are on the peripheries and margins, recognizing the tribal identity and respecting their multi-cultural and pluri-lingual character of the region. Therefore, it is imperative that the Claretians who work among the diverse ethnic and linguistic people, dedicate their service for the over-all development and transformation of the society. Geographically speaking, the partition of the country had its impact by making the Northeast inaccessible and cornered through a 27 km wide chicken-neck corridor, causing isolation of the region and detours in terms of distance and time. Politically speaking, the once neglected and insignificant, unknown and undeveloped Northeast region is emerging to be the hub of the market economy, tourism and is evolving into the political limelight. The region is the corridor to many Southeast Asian countries, and as a hub for our neighbouring nations such as Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, and Myanmar, it has the potential to develop into a socio-economic power in the country.

The present Government has proposed Rs. 45,000 crores for Government investments in the region. Over 70% of the people in the N-E are dependent on agriculture. The perspective has to veer around farming to give a boost in the region. The plan is to take the N-E out of its closet. It has the potential and inner strength to develop into the educational hub of Southeast Asia. This is somewhat akin to Bengaluru developing as such a hub in the mid-1980s. The North-East yet has to become such a rich zone. It has a vibrant and talented deposit of young people. Over five lakh students from the region go to south and north India for education. This emigration has to stop; the region should design itself to draw talent from these regions, including many parts of Southeast Asia. Today it looks difficult. With perspective planning, the Government is visualizing to boost connectivity and transform the North-East through the five elements of development, ("PanchTatva"), viz., Railways, Highways, Airways, Water-ways, and i-ways (Information Superhighway) in the coming years.

NavJan promotes the values of love, forgiveness, justice and brotherhood as the basis of social transformation. The tribal cultures and their identity need to be respected, upheld, and nurtured. For the developmental activities, there shall no discrimination based on colour, caste, creed, or religion; yet a preferential option has to be given for the weak and poor people in the margins. NavJan envisages the empowerment of people with their already instilled capabilities and deposited resources, for an integral development of socio-economic-cultural and spiritual realms and a structural transformation of the society.

2. Integrity of Creation
Back Home

Integrity refers to the rational use of creation, a use that is respectful of its purpose and destiny and is mindful of the needs of future generations. Creation calls for collaboration in an ongoing process and a contribution towards the realization of an unfinished potential. The underlying idea is that there is a certain order that leads to development. If there is respect for creation and efforts to maintain justice, peace and reconciliation, development will be the result. This implies that if there is disorder, abuse of creation, injustice and a lack of peace, there will be a lack of development.

There is a certain ethical worldview of creation, of life, and of human society. The ethical view we have of our world is the rationale and the basis for development. This view must become a moral commitment to planned action so that the ethical vision can become a reality. What becomes clear, therefore, is that the integrity of creation, justice, peace and development must move in a rational order, guided by the human agent and with a vision that is inspired by the Author of Creation.

Briefly we can enumerate what God’s Word gives us as inspiration and as the virtues required for building our world according to is purpose. In order to realize a well ordered society, humanity has to learn to listen to God. We can summarize this understanding in the following ethical principles:

  • Respect human dignity
  • Have concern for the common good
  • Live in solidarity with others
  • Take special care of the poor and the vulnerable
  • Aim at integral development
  • Apply the subsidiary approach in governance
  • Have an open attitude and a readiness for reconciliation
  • Use the goods of this earth in a spirit of stewardship

These basic virtues should guide our human behaviour and assist us in organizing our life together, both at the individual and at the social levels. They need to be translated into economic and political concepts and policies. Care for God’s creation, nurturing of life in its totality, preservation of the ecological balance, promotion of the environment through human cooperation are its special concerns.

3. Promotion of Human Life and Dignity
Back Home

Human Dignity means an individual or group's sense of self-respect and self-worth, and that physical and psychological integrity and empowerment are preserved. Dignity is our inherent value and worth as human beings; everyone is born with it. Respect for a person as merely being a human being is dignity.

By promotion of human dignity, we commit ourselves to advocate for the right of each person, especially women, children and the elderly, to have access to the basic necessities of life—food, shelter, work, education, healthcare, and a safe and healthy environment. We advocate for policies that will allow those in poverty and the working poor, the opportunity to participate within the competitive workforce and become self-sufficient. We oppose unjust discrimination, racism, torture, and human trafficking.

As a gift from God, every human life is sacred from conception to natural death. The life and dignity of every person must be respected and protected at every stage and in every condition. The right to life is the first and most fundamental principle of human rights. We pledge to affirm the intrinsic value of human life and the dignity of every human being in a way that transforms the culture by implementing the life and dignity of the human person. To achieve this goal, the priority plan includes ongoing education, prayer, policy, and advocacy to mobilize the community on issues of life, justice, and peace.

The value of human life is being threatened by cloning, embryonic stem cell research, and the use of the death penalty. The intentional targeting of civilians in war or terrorist attacks is always wrong. Nations must protect the right to life by finding increasingly effective ways to prevent conflicts and resolve them by peaceful means. We believe that every person is precious, that people are more important than things, and that the measure of every institution is whether it threatens or enhances the life and dignity of the human person. The UN Declaration of Human Rights among its 30 articles upholds the fundamental right to life and dignity of each person.

4. People on the Margins
Back Home

People on the margins means a situation, where a person or group has very little power, importance or influence. For a variety of reasons people living on the margins no longer fit into the mainstream; being marginalized means being excluded. They are on the fringes; for example, dalits, tribals, the poor and unemployed youth living on the margins of society,existing at the periphery of a larger group, receiving less or little attentioncompared tothe majority. The laws rarely take into account those onthe margins of society who are often the most vulnerable groupin need ofassistance.

The margins of society refer to an existential rather than physical location. These might include the impoverished, people in the penal system, the homeless, the incurably mentally ill, or certain racial groups. NavJan is for the service of the last, the least and the lost ones of the society, and those on the peripheries must be the preferential recipients of our mission.

5. Prophetic Service to the End
Back Home

Prophetic character is a function or authority to speak the truth always as a spokesperson of God, without looking at its consequences. A prophet is a messenger of God, to be His spokes-person and do what He commands without looking for personal advantages or the likes of the listeners, even in adverse and odd situations. Prophets must be full of power of the Holy Spirit. Without the Holy Spirit, a prophet cannot function and will be just a babbling voice. The scriptures are clear that prophets must have the Spirit of God upon them. John the Baptist challenged Herod for keeping of Herodia, his brother’s wife, and the end result was John losing his own head. Godly character is essential to be a prophet.

To the end means withstanding all the odds of life until the last drop of blood, standing by the ideals one believes in and being ready to sacrifice one’s life for the principles one professes. Some of the key virtues that will be present in a prophet are as follows.

  • Power of the Spirit
  • Total Obedience
  • Peace with God
  • Patience
  • Integrity and honesty
  • Humility
  • Compassion
  • Tenacity and Commitment

6. Networking
Back Home

Networking is a process that fosters the exchange of information and ideas among individuals or groups that share a common interest. It may be for social or business purposes. Professionals connect their business network through a series of symbolic ties and contacts. Networking helps to develop professional relationships that may boost an individual’s future business and employment prospects. Successful networking involves regularly engaging and following up with contacts in the network to provide and receive valuable information that is not readily available outside the network. Proper networking and sharing between likeminded organizations can avoid wastage of resources, duplication of services and improve efficiency. Networking enables sharing of resources and information for better and qualified services to the people being served.

7. Advocacy
Back Home

Advocacy is the act of pleading for, supporting, or recommending active espousal of something. Advocacy is an activity by an individual or group which aims to influence decisions within political, economic, and social systems and institutions. Advocacy can include many activities that a person or organization undertakes, including media campaigns, public speaking, commissioning and publishing research, conducting exit polls or the filing of an amicus brief.

An advocate is someone who provides advocacy support when you need it. An advocate might help you access information you need or go with you to meetings or interviews, in a supportive role. You may want your advocate to write letters on your behalf, or speak for you in situations where you don't feel able to speak for something.

8. Ethical Lobbying
Back Home

Lobbying means the deliberate attempt to influence political decisions through various forms of advocacy directed at policymakers on behalf of another person, organization or group. Lobbying is the activity of trying to persuade someone in authority, usually an elected member of a government, to support laws or rules that give your organization or industry an advantage. It includes all attempts to influence legislators and officials, whether by other legislators, constituents, or organized groups. People who do lobbying are called lobbyists.

The Code of Ethics is utilized as a model by various organizations and serves to strengthen one’s image and enhance one’s role as a vital and respected link in the democratic process. Lobbying is an integral part of our nation's democratic process and is a constitutionally guaranteed right. Ethics is the vision to create a peaceful, happy and harmonious global community. The need-based services are to integrate ethics in the business culture. A professional lobbyist should conduct himself/herself with honesty and integrity and should exhibit accuracy, civility, and courtesy in his dealings with others. Taylor, a professional lobbyist says that ethical lobbying is the product of an ethical culture where there is respect for the law, respect for the individual and respect for the public—many of whom do not have a voice.

9. Community Building
Back Home

Community building is a field of practices directed toward the creation or enhancement of community among individuals within a regional area or with a common interest. It is sometimes encompassed under the field of community development. Organizing the community is the process of people coming together to address issues that matter to them, developing plans for how the city can be a place where all its children do well, or it is neighbours joining in protests to stop drugs and violence in their community. The goal is to develop a coordinated plan of improvement that incorporates all the major elements a community needs to really thrive - housing, schools, health care, transportation, jobs and business.

Building community means to create "a feeling that members have of belonging, a feeling that members matter to one another and to the group, and a shared faith that members' needs will be met through their commitment to be together."Community building is about people from the community, government, business and academia working together to take steps towards solutions to issues affecting their communities. It is about

  • understanding where the community is,
  • what the community aspirations are,
  • what needs to happen to enable change to happen; and
  • adapting what has worked elsewhere and enlisting support from government and other partners to act together to create change.

Through community building the communities organize their own redevelopment by tapping into the passion of their residents and identifying the physical assets of their neighbourhoods. The approach of community building is to put rural residents and local groups at the centre of the process as they build their community’s future in an inclusive and comprehensive way. It is cantered on four Community Building Principles:

  • Go to where the people are
  • Start with what you know and build on what you have
  • Be profoundly inclusive
  • Keep the community at the centre of the work

And it will engage the following six Community Building Practices:

  • Listen to Learn
  • Engage to Mobilize
  • Skill UP, Branch Out
  • Plan Together
  • Create Change
  • Celebrate and Reflect

Real and lasting change wells up from the community since the community is the best positioned to know its own needs. The Community Building approach can support persons to increase connections, build capacity and take community-led action. Doing this work takes purpose, passion and persistence.

10. Governmental and Non-Governmental Agencies:
Back Home

The Constitution of India prescribes the fundamental obligations of the State to its citizens and the duties and the rights of the citizens to the State. The Constitution guarantees six fundamental rights to Indian citizens as follows:

  • right to equality,
  • right to freedom,
  • right against exploitation,
  • right to freedom of religion,
  • cultural and educational rights,
  • right to constitutional remedies.

The Fundamental Duties are defined as the moral obligations of all citizens to help promote a spirit of patriotism and to uphold the unity of India. These duties, set out in Part IV–A of the Constitution, concern individuals and the nation. Like the Directive Principles, they are not enforceable by the law.

A government or state agency, often an appointed commission, is a permanent or semi-permanent organization in the machinery of government that is responsible for the oversight and administration of specific functions, such as an Intelligence Agency. The Public Sector is usually comprised of organizations that are owned and operated by the government and exist to provide services for its citizens. Through the process of outsourcing, Public Sector organizations will often engage private enterprises to deliver goods and services to its citizens.

A non-governmental organization (NGO) is any non-profit, voluntary citizens' group which is organized on a local, national or international level. The primary purpose of an NGO is to defend or promote a specific cause. As opposed to operational project management, these organizations typically try to raise awareness, acceptance and knowledge by lobbying, press work and activist events. As part of civil society, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) are expected to play an important role in fostering the democratic changes.

11. Social Transformation
Back Home

Social transformation is the process by which an individual alters the socially ascribed social status of their parents into a socially achieved status for themselves. In the traditional caste-ridden Indian society, caste determined the central principle of social transformation and it enjoyed a great deal of internal autonomy. Ascribed status is the social status a person is given when he or she is born into a status from birth and assumes the class role later in life. People born into families with wealth, for example, are considered to have ascribed social statuses from birth. In the West specifically, race/ethnic differences and gender can create a basis for ascribed statuses. Achieved status is acquired based on merit, skills, abilities, and actions. Examples of achieved status include being a doctor or even being a criminal—the status then determines a set of behaviours and expectations for the individual.

Transformation refers to large scale social change in cultural reforms. Social transformation is considered an interpersonal negotiation because it requires that the individuals have their position validated by others for transformation. It is a reciprocal relationship in which people have to be embraced and correctly identified with the cultural expectations of their particular class membership. This is the only way that persons can move from their own ascribed status to a new achieved status. Social transformation in this context requires a shift in collective consciousness of a society — local, state, national or global — so that reality is refined by consensus. Social transformations are such when they sustain over time where attitudes and values are held in a completely new context (or paradigm) based upon different assumptions and beliefs.

Since the area covered by Claretians of the North East is so vast with 294 villages in 3 states and 7389 households in the 12 centres, a sample survey of 30% of the households was taken. Accordingly, 2500 questionnaires were printed and distributed to 12 of the centres of NEID. The educated youth and the catechists of the centres were identified and entrusted to visit the families and fill out the survey forms. A briefing was given to the surveyors about the modalities to get the survey done efficiently; through sample filling of the form and a mock survey. Out of 2000 forms distributed, 1604 forms from 11 centres were collected back.

  • 85% household respondents were from Meghalaya, 8% were from Assam and 7% respondents were from Arunachal Pradesh.
  • Out of 1620 households, 1303 households, i.e., 80% live in rural areas.
  • Two thirds of the families are nuclear
  • Major languages spoken are Nyshi, Pnar, Bodo, Santali, Garo and Khasi.
  • Major tribes are Khasi, Garo, Nyshi, Pnar , Santal, Bodo and Munda,
  • On an average there are 3-4 children in a family
  • Majority of the families have 1-2 adults
  • There are 5 to 10 members per family
  • Major occupations of the people are agriculture and labour work
  • Average annual income is 1 to 2 lakhs
  • One of the major issues of the people is accessing Entitlement Documents from the Government like the Ration Card, Voter ID, BPL (Below Poverty Line) Card, Pan Card and Aadhaar card (12-digit unique identification number). Consequently they are not able to access the government schemes and benefits meant for them
  • Majority of the houses are semi-pucca
  • One of the major issues of the people is drinking water as they collect it from public taps, public hand pumps and open wells usually available within 50 to 100 meters distance.
  • Access to toilet facilities is another issue as the majority of the people still depend on open defecation.
  • Motorable roads is another issue for all the rural villages
  • Most of the families have live stock.
  • The health issues affecting the people are tuberculosis, malaria, typhoid and jaundice
  • Most of the households have no savings and no social security schemes.
  • More than 50% of the households have no electricity connection
  • Firewood is the most used means of cooking
  • Migration is another issue
  • Drug addiction, consumption of alcohol and tobacco are major issues
  • Major social issues are divorce, child marriage and abortion

  • Education: Formal and Non-formal
  • Health: Promotive, Preventive and Curative
  • Livelihood: Agriculture, Animal Husbandry, Kitchen Gardens and Vocational training
  • Environment: Care of Creation, Soil conservation, Water preservation and Afforestation
  • Value Formation & Preservation of Culture,
  • Infrastructure Facilities: Sanitation, Drinking water, Housing, Electricity, Roads, Transport, Community Centers
  • THE FOCUS FOR THE STRATEGIC PLANNING PERIOD WILL BE DRINKING WATER AND SANITATION

  • Tribals,
  • Adivasis
  • Marginalised
  • Minorities
  • Women
  • Youth
  • Children
  • Farmers
  • DifferentlyAble
  • Destitute
  • Aged
  • Artisans
  • The Mission In North East India Is Divided Among 4 Zones:

    • Arunachal Pradesh: Boasimla, NyokumLapang, Ziro and Chimpu
    • Assam & Garo Hills: Kachugaon, Borjhar, Ampati
    • Shillong Region: Mooksiang, Mawpat, Umsning and Mawsynram
    • West Khasi Hills: Danger-Balat, Munai and Nonghyllam

    An accompanying team consisting of Trust members, Provincial Team and Zonal leaders will meet every quarter to take stock of the progress of NavJan

    The services of a consultant will be available as and when required.

    NavJan will not be an implementing agency, but a Resource Support Organization

    The 3 tier structure of NavJan consists of Centre, Zones and Delegation

    Goal 1: Facilitate obtaining the entitlement documents to procure various schemes and grants which are available, especially for drinking water and sanitation, for the poor and the marginalized in the region.

    Objective

    The poor people have access to water and sanitation, besides other schemes

    Activities

    • To gather information of the target group not having entitlement documents
    • To create awareness on the necessity of having entitlement documents
    • To organize a core group in the village consisting of 5 persons to facilitate this process
    • To interface with the government departments for obtaining the entitlement documents and schemes.

    Goal 2: Dropout rate to be reduced by 60% among the children of school-going age up to secondary education to promote higher education. Objectives

    • Irrespective of gender, the children develop school-going habit
    • Promote quality education

    Activities

    • Create awareness on the consequences of dropouts
    • Conduct a baseline survey to find out the reasons for the high dropout rate and number of dropouts
    • Motivate the SMCs for quality education
    • Conduct Parents-Teachers meet per year in all the schools
    • Arrange co-curricular activities to make schooling interesting to the learners
    • Arrange remedial classes for slow learners and those from poor economic backgrounds
    • Organize exposure programs for SMC members
    • Interface SMC members with Education department

    Goal 3: Promotion of coaching classes for school-going students who are slow learners to improve their learning skills.

    Objectives:

    The poor slow learners are able to cope up with their studies and continue their education

    Activities:

    • Conduct tests to identify the slow learners
    • Motivate the students who are slow learners by coaching
    • Awareness creation among the stakeholders - parents and teachers
    • Develop teaching and learning materials
    • Assist school authorities in providing coaching classes
    • Mobilize resources for the same
    • Arrange co-curricular activities to make schooling interesting to the learners
    • Arrange remedial classes for slow learners and those from poor economic backgrounds

    Goal 4: Promotion of Environment

    Objectives

    Contribute to the promotion of ecological balance

    Activities:

    • Promotion of organic agriculture
    • Promote soil conservation
    • Promote water preservation
    • Promote afforestation
    • Organize awareness promotion on the consequences of traditional methods of farming
    • Create awareness on the methods of organic farming
    • Motivate farmers to go for soil testing to identify the appropriate and rotation of crops
    • Educate soil and water conservation techniques

    Goal 5: Integrated Development of the Community

    Objective

    The poor and the marginalized are able to live with dignity

    Activities

    • Promotion of Safe Drinking Water Facilities
    • Promotion of Sanitation Facilities
    • Promotion of Kitchen Garden
    • Promotion of Animal Husbandry
    • Promotion of Vocational Training
    • Promotion of Career Guidance
    • Promotion of Legal Awareness
    • Care and support to people affected by substance abuse and alcoholism
    • Promotion of Family Values
    • Promotion of Conflict Resolution and Peace Building
    • Form Community-based Committees to monitor and follow up the activities

    Goal No 6: Community- Based Rehabilitation of the Differently Able

    Objective

    The differently-able are capacitated to live with dignity and contribute to Society

    Activities

    • Promotion of blind walk
    • Conscientisation of the stakeholders
    • Promotion of networking with likeminded organizations and people
    • Promote mobile clinics/ medical camp for identification and treatment
    • Provide subsidized medicines and equipments
    • Motivate donation of blood and vital organs
    • Mobilize local resources
    • Form community based organizations for the implementation and follow-up of the programs
    • Motivate persons to become ambassadors of good will

    • Each center will adopt a model village for integrated development with the support of the Formation Houses and other Institutions
    • Each center will adapt thematic areas as per the Gap analysis
    • Develop goals, objectives and activities with reasonable budget
    • Each center with own resources to contract an MSW person to translate the above plans into action
    • NavJan will consolidate the plan of the 11 centers and mobilize resources for the same
    • A coordinating center for NavJan will be established with required facilities and policies

    The strategic Document is the magnacarta of the plan of action for the coming 6 years for NavJan. The goals, objectives, strategies and activities are drawn out in order to realize the Mission and Vision of NavJan in the context of Northeast India. The love for the people and the commitment to improve the condition of the people is the hallmark of any good organization. Since drinking water is a basic necessity and the core problem of many people in the area, NavJan will concentrate on it. Together with it, NavJan will take up the issue of sanitation and toilet facilities. NavJan will also assist the people to obtain the Entitlement Documents to procure the Government schemes and grants. We thank the General Mission Procure, Rome; the Delegation Government; Dr. Lukose Jacob, the resource person; and all the members of the Delegation, who placed their heart and soul into the realization of this document. Let the example of St. Anthony Mary Claret, who was burning with the fire of love, and the maternal care of the Heart of Mary instil in each of its members the will to make the dream of NavJan a reality.

    “NavJan” means ‘New People’, (the prefix ‘Nav’ means ‘new’ and ‘Jan’ means ‘people’) a concept drawn from the biblical concept of the slavery of the people of Israel in Egypt and Yahweh’s intervention and selection of Moses for their liberation, forming a New Liberated People.

    “NavJan” as a People Empowerment Trust is the social-developmental face of the North-East Independent Delegation (NEID).