By Alyssa Dilly
Jayesh Kamble Jayesh was born and raised in Jamkhed, where both of his parents were employed as social workers at CRHP. As a child, Jayesh grew up and completed his early education in the villages where he had friends of all backgrounds. In the villages he learned at an early age the social and economic dimensions of health and equality and decided to follow in his parents footsteps by becoming a social worker. Following the completion of his masters in social work from the University of Pune, Jayesh moved to New Delhi to work for the Population Foundation of India to examine the inner-workings of Indian Government programs.
Jayesh found little personal satisfaction from working behind a desk in the big city and in 1996 he returned to Jamkhed to work at CRHP where he was able to focus on community mobilization. In doing so he helped facilitate the formation of women’s groups, farmers’ clubs, and self-help groups. In 2004 he travelled to Japan to spend a year at The Asian Institute after Dr. Raj Arole noted his keen interest and proficiency in using agriculture to bring groups together. During his time in Japan Jayesh was able to learn about organic and natural farming and rural leadership for one year. Jayesh returned to CRHP and in the two years following the program helped train more than 880 women from self-help groups and men from farmers’ clubs in organic farming at CRHP’s Khadkat Demonstration Farm.
For the past ten years, Jayesh has been working with the Mobile Health Team, the Adolescent Boys, the Farmers’ Clubs, the Women’s Groups, the Village Health Worker trainings, and trainings for international and Indian government and non-government workers. In early 2013, Jayesh had the opportunity along with CRHP director, Ravi Arole, to facilitate the four CRHP staff retreats held in Aurangabad. Of the experience he says, “I got an opportunity to share the vision, mission, and current goals. It was a two way process; I was able to learn many things from my coworkers. I found that many staff members have leadership qualities, and I strongly believe that with these leadership qualities the CRHP movement will continue to succeed. We have the people; I have a strong faith in that.”
Jayesh continues to be an integral member of the CRHP team and he hopes that from his story, people will learn that, “Health is a fundamental human right. you can’t isolate health from other sectors of life. I’m not a doctor, but I strongly believe in preventive and promotive health. If you have a good environment physically, socially, and economically, it will lead towards good health.”