The Diocese of Cuttack, Church of North India, is the oldest of the three Dioceses of the CNI in Odisha. The membership comprises of 80% of Dalits, Tribals and Backward caste people. In the rural churches, there are marginal farmers and landless laborers, who are an exploited lot due to their ignorance and poverty. The Diocese runs educational institutions such as schools, hostels and one college in the urban centers of Cuttack and Bhubaneswar, and homes in the rural areas. Most of these were started by the Oldest Baptist Missionary Society of England and continue to provide vital educational services.
Many villagers are still suffering from neglect, discrimination and deprivation. As a part of efforts to bring a quality change in their lives, the Cuttack Diocese started philanthropic work in Gajapati district through Socio Economic Development Project for the children and poor communities. One is Integrated Child Development Project where intervention is to address the children education, health, women empowerment and linking people with government schemes.
The Diocese Board of Social Service (DBSS) is another social development activity of dioceses of Cuttack. It works on issues of better education for children, scholarship facilities, water, sanitation & hygiene improvement, developing alternative livelihoods and linking people with government schemes. The DBSS is also working to unite the people to benefit from locally available resources and to raise the collective voice against their exploitation. DBSS in collaboration with government has started agricultural activities like vegetable cultivation, bee keeping and organic farming to create alternative means of livelihood . It also helps in developing water and road connection to its target villagers. DBSS is also running a campaign on keeping the village and its surroundings clean, awareness building on toilet use and stopping open defecation and spreading the message to use soap and follow sanitary measure before and after toilet use.
As a result of these efforts, dropout has decreased in schools, livelihood standards have increased and road and water connections have improved. People are now becoming aware about social security schemes of government, about village development and role of panchayat. Number of new churches have also increased and new evangelists are posted in different area of Dioceses.
Coordinator: Mr. Amiya Rahula (9439320431, 9683802713) (firstname.lastname@example.org)