A NEW PRESENCE : August 12, 1994 A Rehabilitation Centre for Female Chemical Dependent.
The community of Imphal is sure to go down in the annals of the entire Congregation due to its promptness to respond to the signs of the times and the needs of the place. This was a long felt need Ė to reach out to marginalized women in Manipur, especially Drug addicts. It is the Sneha Bhavan, the centre for Rehabilitation of Chemically Dependent Women is indeed a house of love where the girls with their dramatic past and the seemingly unconquerable present are fortified with concrete gestures of love that transform them.
The motherly heart of Sr. Teresa Karottukunnel helps in creating an atmosphere of acceptance and optimism. It is the first time that a work of this type has been undertaken in the Institute. Sr. Teresa the Directress of the Centre is the pioneer of this daring venture- a work much appreciated by the Church, the Institute and Society. Eight young women find in Sneha Bhavan a Home of Love.
The Centre is located in a rented building in Lamphel 5 kms away from Little Flower School. Sr. Teresa used to make this journey daily to the Centre. At this initial stage the Province gave financial support to the Centre. In 1995 Vocational Training was given to the young women along with the treatment to empower women.
January 1, 1998- Sneha Bhavan shifted to Little Flower premises.
With the help of MISEREOR a building was constructed to accommodate the growing number of patients. A piece of land was set apart by the Province in the premises of Little Flower School for the construction of the building.
A new feature was added to the already existing work with the arrival of a little girl- daughter of a drug addict. This gave rise to the care of the children of the addicts. In the same year widows infected with HIV were taken care of in the centre.
Short Stay Home for widows and their Children
The number of widows seeking shelter in Sneha Bhavan increased; so also the homeless girls on completion of treatment for drug addiction. We looked for a place and Godís providence came to our rescue. A vast area of land for cultivation and a beautiful spacious building for their stay, which was the Salesian Novitiate, where two priests and a brother were murdered on May 15th 2001, was given to us.
As a result we inaugurated the SHORT STAY HOME for 15 widows and their 22 children on February 7th 2003, with the generous support from I.G.S.S.S. (Indo German Social Service Society). Now the land is being cultivated by our widows, and for their children we opened a residential school, where the teachers are a recovering addict and a little girl of 12 years who is also HIV positive.
On this memorable occasion when we celebrate the Golden Jubilee of the establishment of Little Flower School. Today it stands with majesty and magnitude. Even with the passage of time mission of the Salesian Sisters remains the same. The present sisters and teachers impart quality education and integral formation through various effective means. Little Flower is the pride of the people in and around the city whose children secure very good results in their public exams and acquire a well grounded education which enables them to be useful to the country in general as well as to their own families and societies in particular.
Today we cannot but recall with gratitude and a sense of pride the great pioneers who launched out into the great adventure of education according to the spirit and style of Saint John Bosco and Saint Mary Mazzarello. The Provincial and the local Superiors, all the Principals and Headmistresses and the dedicated staff who steered the institution through hard and troubled times and guided the destinies of so many students ought indeed to be remembered with love and gratitude.
It is therefore with a deep sense of gratitude to God and Mother Mary and to all those who, through their dedicated service, have made Little Flower School an ideal centre of virtue and knowledge, that we celebrate the fiftieth year of its foundation. May this celebration be yet another stepping stone to further progress and excellence and spur us on to greater dedication in our noble task of education.