Lakshmi Annapurna now does things that most women don’t make a reach for. Starting out from a modest background and a society that was yet to surpass few inhibitions, Lakshmi went on to accomplish the unimaginable. Margam Foundation, her brainchild now literally shows the way to the rest of the society.
Margam, Way of Life, was founded with clear cut goals – to make the streets and cities of Andhra cleaner, greener and devoid of accidents. What began as a grass root level execution at Vijayawada is now fast reaching out to other parts of the state. Lakshmi’s vision is now paving the way for neater and safer streets.
“I have started this primarily for traffic awareness. I have seen the need and wanted a streamlined traffic in India. Many a times, I would try my best to educate groups on the same. It was important to make the little kids understand the value of it all. To this effect, I used to conduct drawing competitions to spread the awareness in a creative way” says Lakshmi.
So what had triggered off this idea? “I myself was in a road accident few years ago, and that made me realize how distracting all those street posters were. Not many understood that this was actually one of the grave issues to be addressed. There has to be more awareness in schools and corporations and we are trying the mighty best from our end.” she says.
For a noble mission as her’s, people and government have to willingly come together and lend a hand. Lakshmi shares that people don’t bother about these things as long as government doesn’t. “When I started off, I was all by myself. I used to randomly walk into corporations to discuss the prevailing road issues. Even though it would look as if I was heard, the process used to get perpetually delayed. I then decided to go on my own. Social media proved to be a great way to ask people to come and join the cause. In fact, I would say that social media has helped me a lot better than the real life follow ups.”
Margam’s poster free concept began in June 2014 and fetched a massive response. Lakshmi had to work tirelessly on the mission, roping in more volunteers who showed active participation. “Margam’s poster free initiative served two purposes – the concept beautified the streets while making the roads more safer without distractions. There will be a great impact on citizens with this idea. More than 300 volunteers came forward to work with me. We have dedicated volunteers now, a total of 90 in Margam. We also have a structure in place and are going about it in an organised way.” Lakshmi smiles.
Margam also received great response in Guntur. The team began their work after being invited by the Commissioner of Police on October 2nd, the day of Swacch Bharat. The best part being, CM Sri N Chandrababu Naidu joining the team and painting along with the them. Lakshmi managed to get the attention of the AP State Government and has been heavily applauded for her efforts.
The simple girl from Vijayawada does not want to stop there. “Our main goal is to penetrate the entire country. I still don’t know the path but we are working on making India look more beautiful” she says.
Lakshmi also has some more fun and meaningful concepts that will change the way society looks and functions. She wants to start a fun club that brings people together, conducts physical games to relieve stress.She had also initiated Akshara Samskaar – an idea to bring back moral science for children. “There is a lot of negativity going around in the society. I have adopted 150 students last year under this mission. We would ideally need funding to make the project go large scale”
When asked about her hobbies, Lakshmi simply signs off saying that she loves bringing smiles on faces. KostaLife celebrates heroes like Lakshmi Annapurna, the true impact makers of the society.