Amma’s house-building project provides free houses for the homeless
and slum-dwellers. In 1998, Mr. Atal Behari Vajpayee, the
Prime Minister of India at the time, handed over a symbolic key for
the first 5,000 free homes to beneficiaries in Kerala.
By 2002, the initial target of 25,000 homes throughout India
had been met, and Amma immediately made a second pledge—
this time to build 100,000 houses throughout India.
The M.A. Math is providing free homes and constructing villages
all over India. This vast project is possible thanks to the selfless
service of Amma’s monastic disciples and volunteers. They
not only supervise the construction of the houses but also build
roads, provide electricity, drill bore wells and install water tanks.
Houses commonly have two rooms, a verandah and separate bathrooms.
State governments are providing land for the M.A. Math’s new
developments in Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh in the North,
W. Bengal in the East, Rajasthan and Maharashtra in the West, and
Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala in the South.
The Amrita Kuteeram residents have
finally been able to leave the slums,
where crowding, petty crime and lack
of hygiene are rampant. As they no
longer need to pay rent, the Kuteeram
residents have money to purchase essential
items that they previously had
to go without.
For each development, the M.A.
Math builds a community hall where
residents can come together and celebrate
cultural festivals. The branch
ashrams support the community by
providing informal schooling and
helping the adults to find new work
opportunities. Amrita Kuteerams are
thus instrumental in providing the
poor with a whole new start in life.