SPARC_Mumbai_2This year’s Curry Stone’s Vision Award goes to The Society for the Promotion of Area Resource Centers (SPARC) “for their dedicated work in improving the lives of slum-dwellers across India.”

“Founded by Sheela Patel, SPARC has worked at both the physical and policy levels, making change with dedication, numbers and force of will.Founded by Sheela Patel in 1984, The Society for the Promotion of Area Resource Centers (SPARC) advocates for the legitimization of slum-dweller communities throughout India.  SPARC began their work fighting against evictions, but now extensively lobbies for physical, social and legal improvements on behalf of India’s estimated 65 million slum dwellers.  In their work, SPARC confronts the most urgent urban issues facing humanity: the rise of the informal city.”

We congratulate SPARC and are proud to have them as one of our master program’s collaborating institutions. Having provided internships to many of our students over the years, we have seen their work up close and witnessed first-hand their dedication to improving living conditions for the urban poor.

Working on site talking to local slum dwellers
Former student Tara Whelan conducting toilet studies in an informal settlement of Mumbai during her internship with SPARC in 2013.

Watch Curry Stone’s short film about SPARC’s work, and read our students’ accounts of their internship experiences with the organization:

Development obstacles in Mumbai

What Makes a Great Community Toilet? Learning from Sanitation Partnerships in Mumbai

Conducting toilet studies in the slums of Mumbai

Providing adequate housing and maintaining livelihoods in Dharavi


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