The plan for ACCORD had always been to pull out in 10 years and try and ensure that within that time, the community be enabled and empowered to ensure their needs and access their rights. Accordingly in 1995, more than 1000 members from the community got together over a period of few days and discussed the future of the movement.
This meeting led to the continuation of ACCORD and the need was put forth to have a fully functional Adivasi Hospital as well as a school. Vidyodaya school, set up by Ramdas and Rama, to cater to the needs of the children of the staff at the institutions was immediately opened up to the Adivasi children and handed over to AMS and work began on building a hospital.
The meeting also marked our first steps towards financial self reliance. Madhuvana – a 176 acre tea estate was purchased with the help of our well wishers in Germany – the Adivasi Tea Projekt (http://www.adivasi-tee-projekt.org/) & Ms. Hillary. The idea was that the proceeds from the estate would help sustain the funding requirements of the three organisations. Unfortunately, the international tea market crashed the next year and we could not implement our plan as expected.
The first group of Adivasis from Gudalur visited Germany during this period in what was their first trip abroad ever. Since then, this has become a regular feature of our relationship with ATP.