Vrindavan is also known as the "city of widows". A large number of widows move into the town and surrounding areas after losing their husbands. The widows come mostly from states of West Bengal, Assam and Odisha. Many spend their last days singing bhajans at the Bhajanashrams.
While most come here to find God, many come because they have nowhere else to go. Others are just dumped here by families who no longer want to spend for their care.
They used to lead a pathetic life, mostly begging for their living and staying on the roadsides – without proper shelter, proper clothing and medical aid.
Ageing women are more vulnerable than men. Without any financial security or welfare infrastructure, many of them are abandoned in Vrindavan - where they live off charity while they wait to die.
While many came to spend their last days in Vrindavan, which they considered the most sacred place to die, many of them were abandoned by their own families either out of abject poverty or they were considered a burden to be looked after.
Most of the widows chant prayers at many religious institutions and get paid paltry sums, hardly sufficient even for one full meal a day.
All widows over the age of 60 are eligible for a small government pension. But most are illiterate and do not even know the existence of such schemes nor do they have bank accounts to access even that.
Seeing this need of our elderly and abandoned section of society the Paramhansa Yogananda Public Charitable Trust launched its operation in Vrindavan in August 2015 and thus transformed the lives of thousands of elderly neglected widows.
The Trust is currently reaching a total population of more than 4000 elderly destitute abandoned and helpless widows through various need based care programs to meet their physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual requirement.
The focus of the Paramhansa Yogananda Public Charitable Trust is to spread “Ever New Joy” in the lives of all the mothers whom we care for by raising their consciousness and helping them have a healthy, happy and collaborative life and restoring their dignity and self-respect. We achieve this by providing an environment of love, care and compassion. To ensure a healthy life style, we take special care of nourishing their body, mind and soul through various well thought out activities and programs. The Trust provides a safe and respectful environment for our elderly and helps them find their self-worth. Our team of 76 full time, qualified, trained and dedicated members reach the most needy and helpless elderly mothers through various support services and home-based care.
We are striving to uplift the consciousness of the mothers and the society as a whole so that in the future Vrindavan will be known as a place of Empowered women and not destitute women.