The Founder Chairperson. Her visits to Indian poor Dalit villages and her association with social activists, inspired her to found Voice of Dalit International in 1999 in The U.K. Trained as a Civic Champion in 2001, under The Millennium Commission she continues to be the moving spirit of VODI. She volunteers in all the day to day activities of VODI especially in fundraising and networking.
A Dalit activist from India. The involvement with Dalit development work started during the student days itself. As a graduate student Mr. George was the District Committee member of Kerala Harijan Students Federation (KHSF). Later he worked with Kerala Harijan Federation (KHF) as an activist.
After the education, Mr. George took up applied research of issues relating to tribals and Dalits which later on made him an activist again working for the marginalised communities. In 1994, he started working with traditional fishermen as the Project Officer of Trivandrum District Fishermen Federation, a people’s organisation of traditional fishermen in Kerala. This involvement with traditional fishermen community still continues. At present he is also the Chief Executive of Coastal Educational and Cultural Trust (CECT), an organisation working for the traditional fishermen in South India.
When Voice of Dalit International started in 1999, Mr. George was one of the founding trustees and lived in the UK for three years for setting up and nurturing VODI. Later, he returned to India on the invitation of the Minister for Welfare of Dalits in Kerala, to be his secretary, which was a responsible position in government.
After the tenure in government, Mr. George took up the Dalit Christian issue- the struggle of Dalit Christians for constitutional rights as Dalits otherwise called Scheduled Castes in India. Together with a few other Dalit Christian activists, he formed the National Council of Dalit Christians (NCDC) as a platform of Dalit Christians in India. Mr. George is the National Convener of NCDC. The NCDC conducted series of struggles in Delhi and in different states over the last four years which eventually helped to bring national visibility for the Dalit Christian issue.
After having experienced the atrocities as a Dalit, Mr. Samra has been involved with the Communist movement in his State, Punjab, India. Since his arrival in the UK 18 years back has been involved in many ways to help the Dalit cause. Mr. Samra responded to VODI's Gujarat Earthquake Appeal and communicated his life long desire of helping dalit cause and thus slowly became the trustee of VODI. He is also the Treasurer and campaigner of VODI.
Fr. Gerard Mitchell Sj. is the Parish Priest of St. Anselms Church, Southall, Middlex, London Borough of Ealing.
Mr. Gregory Pius is employed by the London Underground and has been with them for the last 30 years. Along with this he runs an Ayurvedic Clinic in Milton Keynes. Further, he finds time to get involved in many social, charitable and business activities. Previously he was the President of the British Keralite Association for many years and is now closely associated with the World Malayalee Forum. Being a devoted friend of VODI he came forward to sponsor the Dalit leaders and future leaders to study in the UK for VODI‘s Dalit Development Courses. Gregory Pius is an artist and a man of charisma. He is charitable and was one of our original Trustees and has now rejoined VODI.
Dr. Peter J David is a General medical Practitioner, owner and Chief Executive of a Health Care Group, with 130 employees, 1 hospital and 2 nursing homes. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine and the Institute of Directors and a Registered Member with the General Medical Council and the British Medical Association. He is a tutor in Imperial College Medical School, London and King’s College Medical School London. He is Visiting Professor, Department of Sociology University of Peshawar NWFP Pakistan and Attorney of the Church of Scotland in Pakistan. He is the President of Federation of Pakistani Christians in the UK and serving Pakistani immigrant population causes in Education, Health and Community development. Dr. Peter David’s keys to success lay in his belief of ‘Inspire to succeed’ and to ‘Never give up’.
He says “During the last 35 years while I have lived and worked in London I have worked tirelessly to undertake initiatives that bring together people and organisations of different faiths to create consensus and harmony between communities. I have successfully enabled the Pakistani communities living in the U.K to interact with the British politicians and leaders at the highest possible echelons of political and social strata. His most significant service to his country “Through my health care business, I have brought in the UK, absolutely legally, and free of any charges, 128 Pakistani nurses, along with their families, to work and live in the UK on work permits. I consider this as my biggest personal achievement in the service to my country”.
His biggest Political Service “I appealed personally and directly, with success, to the Secretary of the Commonwealth in the Head offices of the Commonwealth in London to allow Pakistan to be readmitted to the nations of Commonwealth. I bring to the attentions of many British M.Ps that I know the pressing national issues of Pakistan, to improve Pakistan’s standing internationally”.
He continues to donate generously to many educational, charitable, relief and mission work in Pakistan