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Rising Beyond the Past, Creating Future

There is a very thin line that distinguishes right from wrong. But when a meal a day becomes luxury, every line disappears till gnawing hunger on  the inside becomes the only painful reality. This was Veeresh’s reality.

Veeresh and his siblings grew up in abject poverty with a single-mother  who did coolie work to raise her children. Whatever was earned, always  felt short of what was needed, till there was no right or wrong before Veeresh anymore. He had to fill his stomach somehow and that was all he  knew. So he would steal food or grain from home or the neighbours and  sell it for money, all of which created a lot of trouble both inside and outside his family. He would get beaten by his family and threated to get  disowned if he didn’t change. Finally, tired of the cycle of poverty, at the age of thirteen, Veeresh ran away from the small village that was his home.

He went to Koppal where he worked in a hotel for 3-4 months and then went to Bellary, to Mysore, to Bengaluru. His money ran out as he reached Bengaluru jobless and penniless. As Veeresh walked aimlessly through Majestic he came across an auto driver who, understanding his plight, took him to BOSCO Yuvakendra.

It was in the April of 2000 that Veeresh came to BOSCO. Mr Basavaraj took charge of the young boy and gave him food and clothes and reassured him. Veeresh was counselled on the various vocational trades available at BOSCO, and was sent to Bosco Mane. Gradually Veeresh started trusting the intentions of the people around him. Sr Sheeba’s persistent efforts at gaining his confidence finally paid off and Veeresh allowed her a glimpse into is life. His mother was immediately informed about her son’s whereabouts. She was so grateful to know that he was safe. His uncle requested BOSCO to help him with his education and future.

As Veeresh did not have any documents or a school transfer certificate with him, till he could get his documents from home, he was enrolled for training in tailoring. In August 2000, almost 8 months after he had left home, Veeresh went home to his mother and his family. His family was overjoyed to see him safe and happy and to learn about his life in Bengaluru. After obtaining his transfer certificate with the determination
to make something out of his life, Veeresh came back to Bengaluru and took up his education from where he had left off. He was enrolled in the 9th grade, completed his SSLC with a first class and went on to a diploma
in mechanical engineering.

After completing his diploma, Veeresh took up a job in BHE. Later, Veeresh started his own company which manufactures equipment for pharmaceutical companies. It now has a monthly turnover of over five lakh rupees. He also runs a school through Grameena Abhivruddhi Mathu Shikshana Samsthe – an organisation formed with the involvement of  village leaders and locals – and educates 60-70 children in his hometown, the same place that had driven him away branding him as a troublemaker.
Life had brought Veeresh a long way from the young child who had stepped into BOSCO with fear and anxiety written all over him. He is married and has two children, a man of vision who has a clear goal for his future. He plans to expand his school, currently up to 5th grade, to SSLC. He is also working on expanding his company in Bengaluru.