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Joe Madiath      

Social Entrepreneur; Founder and Executive Director, Gram Vikas

Joe Madiath has spent 30 years working in development among the poorest communities in Orissa, India. Drawn there in 1971 to help communities that had been ravaged by a cyclone, Joe stayed on as an activist focused on sustainable development projects. He founded Gram Vikas in 1979 and has served as executive director ever since, growing Gram Vikas into one of the largest non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in Orissa. Gram Vikas originally focused on providing renewable energy for rural communities, building more than 54,000 biogas units. Over time, Gram Vikas developed its more holistic model of development, based on Joe’s conviction that every family in a village must have healthy living practices and an improved quality of life before total development can occur. This model has transformed at least 1,000 villages and has proven that the rural poor can and will pay for better sanitation and water facilities.

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The Dream: Full Water and Sanitation Coverage for India

Joe Madiath is the Founder and Executive Director of Gram Vikas. He has worked in Orissa, an eastern coastal state in India, since 1979 in water and sanitation, ...

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