success stories

Success Stories
Meet some of alumni of the Home and the School, who have lived and learned at Seva Sadan and have ventured out into the world with confidence and determination and have made a mark for themselves despite all odds. Needless to say we at Seva Sadan are extremely proud of them.

Priyanka Sakhalkar  

Priyanka Sakhalkar
Faculty at the Maharashtra Education Society’s Optometry College, Pune

Priyanka was brought to the Seva Sadan Society’s Home as a young orphan along with her sister when she was barely 9 years old. She fondly remembers spending her entire childhood and her adolescent years at Seva Sadan where she and her sister were supported, educated and taught by caring matrons and teachers.

She believes that it was the nurturing atmosphere in the Home and the support she received, which was responsible for her good academic performance at school and her drive to realize her full potential.

She passed out from the 10th standard from the Seva Sadan school with first class honours and enrolled in the Lotus College of Optometry, where she completed a B.SC. in Optometry, winning three gold medals.

After graduation, she worked as a Senior Varilux Lens Consultant in the multi-national company, Essilor, where she trained opticians and newcomers in understanding the technical issues, clearing their doubts and promoting the Company’s new products. She won the Star Performer Award from her Company two years in a row.

Simultaneously, she completed her MBA in Marketing with first class honours from Welingkar Institute.

Recently, she got married and moved to Pune, where she took up a teaching job and is currently a Faculty member at the Maharashtra Education Society’s Optometry College.


Suhasini Bhople Chemburkar
Reservations Receptionist at Four Season's Hotel

Suhasini, coming from a very modest background, studied at the Seva Sadan Society’s School, graduated from High School and chose the hospitality industry as her choice of career.

When she got her first job at The Four Season’s Hotel in Mumbai, she was merely a junior Room Apprentice. She went through a two-year training and induction course in the hotel's Housekeeping and various Front Office Departments. She specialized in the Communications Department where she learned to deal diplomatically with all types of guests and their requests.

Having gained the experience and the confidence to deal with more responsibility, she took an internal transfer to the Reservations Department, the hotel's main revenue generating arm.

Within a year, Suhasini was promoted as Reservations Receptionist. However, the young lady did not rest on her laurels. She set her sights much higher, and continued to learn and grow in her career, and was recently transferred to the Four Season’s Maldives Hotel, and enjoys greater responsibility.

Suhasini is happily married to Akshay Chemburkar, who is the Assistant Food and Beverage Manager, also at the Four Season's Hotel.

Sharada Satpute  

Sharada Satpute
Restaurant Supervisor at Seva Sadan’s restaurant, By The Way

Sharda came to Seva Sadan in 1976 when she was 11 years old. A bright student, she studied at the Seva Sadan School and went on to Bhuvan’s College and graduated with a degree in Economics and Sanskrit. Soon afterwards, Sharda got married.

After almost 19 years of a domesticated life, Sharda returned to Seva Sadan once again – but this time to assist as a Matron. She wanted to give back to the Home she had grown up in and sought look after the girls with as much care and affection as she had received.

Recognizing Sharda’s ability to muti-task and her high degree of motivation, the Managing Committee at Seva Sadan decided to offer her a new challenge. They gave her the opportunity to supervise and oversee the running of their restaurant,
By The Way.

Sharda has risen to the occasion and has proved herself to be a very competent
manager despite her lack of previous experience, and runs the restaurant with great efficiency and receives glowing praise from our patrons.

Kalpana Gaekwad  

Kalpana Gaekwad
Professional Social worker

Kalpana was brought to Seva Sadan in 1985 when her father died. Her mother, a live-in domestic help could not keep Kalpana with her, as her employer wouldn’t allow it. Having no recourse, her mother brought her to Seva Sadan, where she was told that Kalpana would be well looked after and cared for.

She stayed at Seva Sadan for 13 years until she got married in 1998. She studied and graduated from the Seva Sadan High School and went on to complete a Bachelors of Social Work through Nirmala Niketan.

Kalpana has been a professional Social Worker and has 17 years of experience in managing, supervising and monitoring different projects and and programmes with the Government and Non-Government Organizations at the Maharashtra State level.

She has worked as an Advocacy Officer in the Lawyer’s Collective HIV / AIDS Unit, which is an organization that offers free legal services to people living with HIV / AIDS all over India. Her most recent assignments were with Praxis India Research
Organization as State Coordinator for Maharashtra and with the Public Health
Foundation of India as Programme Officer in Thane District.

It is to her credit that she has accomplished what she has and won many awards, but more so that she has the social conscience to devote her time and work for social causes.

Nandini Vaze  

Nandini Vaze
Self-taught Businesswoman

Nandini came to Seva Sadan as a child in the year 1960. She stayed here throughout her growing years and went to the Seva Sadan School from Primary to High School, and lived here till she got married.

Her life was happy as a housewife till her husband suddenly passed away. She was left with no income and two young sons to bring up. Despite having no know how, she was compelled to take up where her husband had left off. She taught herself and continued her husband’s business of marketing a new substance (Fortune Care Rust Converter), which prevented corrosion on iron and MS Steel.

In time she became so good at her job that soon she commanded great respect from government officials and engineers alike, especially since she conducted the trials for the product herself -- such as climbing down the precariously placed radial gate at the bottom of a dam. She has been immensely successful and has won several projects all over India, including that of the famous Koyna Dam.

Manisha Kandalgaonkar  

Manisha Kandalgaonkar
Insurance Advisor

Manisha was brought as a child to Seva Sadan in 1980 when her parents died and there was no guardian to look after her. Soon after coming here she was diagnosed with a major heart problem -- a hole in her heart.

She was nursed and cared for at our Home and was given the best medical treatment, and finally in 1993 she was successfully operated on at the Bombay Hospital.

Manisha was always a bright girl, so she did a computer course and completed it successfully, after which she worked at Seva Sadan’s Administration office till 2001, until she got married.

Today, she is happily married has a young son and works from home as an Insurance Advisor for the LIC.

Vatsala Hemmady  

Vatsala Hemmady
An accomplished life at 75

Vatsala (who after her marriage, is known as Nirmala Ganguly), is the oldest alumni of the Seva Sadan Home we could trace. One day, not so long ago, she just came by, because she said she had the urge to revisit her “mother’s” home, which is how close she feels to Seva Sadan, where she grew up.

She was brought here as an orphan in 1947, when she was only 10 years old, and she stayed here for 12 years during her most formative years. She relates very fond
memories of the people she lived with, and who raised her and educated her and her gratitude is evident as she speaks about her life as she grew up within this institution.

She was always a very bright student who maintained a high level of academic
standard and became a Primary School teacher at St. Columba School, when she was still in her teens, until she got married in 1958.

Although she did not do a formal job while she raised a family of three children, she found another calling - she became an outstanding singer with All India Radio.

In 1983, when her son was ready to go abroad for further studies, he persuaded her to give him company and pursue a college degree as well. Sporting as she was, she agreed, and did Part I of the M.A. degree in Marathi literature at S.N.D.T. College. Her son on the other hand went on to study engineering in the U.S. and is today a senior executive with Intel in California.

Vatsala continued to be with S.N.D.T. for a few years, but in the capacity of a Home Science teacher where she taught sewing and machine embroidery and other
related skills.

Until recently, Vatsala (or Nirmala, as she is now known), had virtually converted her two bedroom apartment at Worli, into a Home Science school, where she taught different skills like sewing, embroidery, machine embroidery, tatting, knitting, crochet… to name a few. But now at 75, age has caught up with her and she has slowed down and cannot do as much as she wants to.

Not only has she been a teacher, but also a businesswoman. She has made a name for herself in making beautiful, well finished stuffed toys, which are sold in select stores in Mumbai, but mainly to individuals through word of mouth.