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Parthasarathy, founder of AravanA human aspiring with dream:

ARAVAN was founded by a young and energetic Social Scientist Parthasarathy based in Virudhunagar town, South India.  He is hailing from a poor family and had bad experiences in his childhood. His life passed thorough poverty, neglection, loneliness and abuse. But he did not afraid of them because his mother molded him with courage and intelligence.

His mother has had a major impact in his life; she imbibed a strong social conscience within him as she knew the battle of everyday life for our livelihoods. She was the one who taught him to be independent and told him that poverty cannot dominate the society. This motivated him to do something for society. He has  not enjoyed his  childhood or adolescence but he considered these years as a good opportunity to learn to face the challenges, struggles and battles in life, from his early age.

He finished his graduation with hardships and sufferings by doing a part time job.  After that he started his career as a computer operator in an NGO. But he realized quickly that this job wasn’t fit to his values as his passion was to become a National level social activist since he had never enjoyed his rights.  Therefore he wished to work and speak out for those who are also not enjoying their rights.

In 2002, he worked as a field staff in child labour eradication project of that NGO. In that project, he played an important role in identifying child labourers, because he was also a child labour during his childhood upto the age of 15. In 2004 he started to work for Women Rights with a trade union of 20,000 women construction labourers in the unorganized sector. He played the major role in advocacy of policy change for unorganised sector women labourers.

7 years back, during his train journey to Kanyakumari, two Transgenders were begging among the passengers.

His notorious narration about his train journeyAs I  interacted with them one started to weep and told her sad story. She said that she had been neglected by her family and relatives because she was a Transgender. She had no shelter, no work or income and thus needed beg and doing sex work. When I heard their story I really thought of my personal abuse in my childhood. Because of my innocence I did not know that I was actually abused. It was then that I realized that LGBT people were going through the violation of their rights. I then started to understand the problems faced by underprivileged Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) people and felt the need to serve them, to ensure social justice and guarantee the dignity of LGBT. In 2009 I became completely involved in the LGBT people’s project but this project only focused on HIV/AIDS, not their rights or economic activities”.

From the above incident he realized that there are spaces where LGBT people cannot participate. These are spaces that they need strong support from other members of the community. He as a human being, having witnessed their vulnerability, felt that he should make their voices heard.
he decided to work for most vulnerable and disadvantage LGBT people for their human rights which is denied – either by law or practices – civil, political, social and economic, not only in his District but in the whole nation.

Therefore, ARAVAN concept was conceived in his mind and it become real by formation and promotion of ARAVAN as a unique organisation working especially for LGBTs.

He believes that social change is possible only by collective action by various stakeholders. Likewise changing lives of LGBT also a collective action wherein actors come together and work together. He is waiting for that day when people’s mindset against LGBT will change towards acceptance of differential sexual orientations, equality of legal rights and providing equal opportunities in schools and work places.

On the way of his dream journey he was shaped as a social change maker, in the year 2016, at Kanthari, an international institution empowering social visionaries.

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