Building them homes, furthering their dreams
Having own home is more than a roof over the head – it is about daring to dream new as well.
Wherever people live and work they need houses. That too affordable ones. Only when they have a roof over their heads can people live without insecurity and fear, raise their children responsibly and realise their own potential. Ever since its inception in 2013, ‘housing for everyone’ was one of the flagship programmes of Twenty20 under which it constructed new houses, gave land to the landless and renovated old and dilapidated dwellings. These houses are not just built by qualified and experienced architects and engineers but using the latest technologies, quality components and as per Vastu, the ancient Indian system of construction to ensure good health, peace and prosperity of the inhabitants.
It was less than a year ago the widely lauded and emulated ‘God’s Villa’ project of Twenty20 was inaugurated by ace actor, director, Kamal Haasan. This was a cluster of 37 houses of an erstwhile ‘laksham veedu colony’ – a government housing project for the economically and socially backward communities of Kerala started in 1972 – which had begun to cave in and was held together by tarpaulin sheets and ropes that saw an unbelievable transition capable of giving any million-rupee villa project a run for its money. “People were living in abject misery and filthy conditions,” Sabu Jacob, chief coordinator of Twenty20 and MD of Kitex Garments had said at the time of its inauguration. “Rebuilding each of these shanties and ensuring everyone in Kizhakkambalam live in pucca houses is our priority.” Delivering on his words, the social responsibility arm of the Anna Kitex Group has completed 25 houses more in the Vilangu ward of the village. While the name is not yet finalised, many of the residents are eager to call it ‘God’s Villa – 2.’
“It’s nothing less than a gift from God,” said Binoy MV, a two-wheeler mechanic and one of the beneficiaries of the new housing project. “I am 38 years old and I don’t remember ever seeing the area so spick and span.” Binoy eagerly shows us around his house while his relatives discuss the placing of furniture. “There are two rooms in each of the houses, a large hall, veranda and bathrooms,” he said. “In case any of us want additional space in the future, foundation and design provision has been made to add another floor to the house.” Needless to say, the residents are all ecstatic; they regularly meet with the welfare staff of Twenty20 to share their ideas and thoughts.
The houses were all built at an approximate cost of Rs 14 lakh each. Common amenities include a 20,000 litre water tank with its own water pumping and purifier system. For backup and other exigencies, there is a second well too within the compound. The access road is tiled for durability and endurance. An Anganwadi is underway in the vicinity which will enable both the husband and the wife to hold fixed hour jobs. As we emerge from the house, Binoy points to the car porch which was being cleaned by someone. “See, every house has car parking facility even though only one or two families have a car,” he said. “This is going to inspire us to buy cars.”
A roof over their heads is the fructification of a dream that is well-nigh impossible for many. This is nothing less a dream come true; the resultant optimism is overwhelming. Positivity fills the air. A formal announcement regarding the inauguration will be made by Twenty20 in the next few weeks.