The Inspiring Story Of Once A Rag Picker Now Feeding Over 800 Slum Kids 

Mad4India By Nalin Kashyap | 3 min read

The inspiring story of Dev Pratap Singh, who once was a rag picker grew out of the poverty spiral and wants the same for other slum kids. 

It is often said that people around us have the power to mend what our future will turn out to be. Well, the former rag picker Dev Pratap Singh has completely changed this saying for us. The inspiring story of a middle-aged person wanting to bring a change in society isn’t new. What’s new about this NGO is the voyage of the man who started it. 

The inspiring story of Dev Pratap Singh 

The inspiring story and journey to helping others started when Dev was just 11 years old. He decided to run away from his family because of his abusive father and toxic environment. He had exactly around 130 rupees to board a train to Gwalior. 

While on the journey he saw kids picking up used bottles in a bin. Dev befriended them and started picking up rags and became a rag picker to start earning immediately. An 11-year-old, unaware of how the world functions, also began stealing iron, metal objects and used them to sell with the rags to a scrap dealer as a rag picker.

Was arrested One day.  

The acquaintance that Dev made in his childhood used to snort whiteners and drugs. It was not long before the dev also started doing it. While revisiting these memories he says that ‘Drugs were easily available ‘. 

rag picker
Source – Instagram

Two years passed, and suddenly, Dev was arrested on the charges of robbery and sent to the juvenile rehabilitation centre.

 He then dealt with the ecosystem of Wretched food, an unhygienic environment in the centre. It was only when a Samaritan called Raja bailed him out to give him a better life. There was no turning back from rag picker to an inspiring story.

A few years later, Dev moved to Delhi to work as a salesman, traveling from place to place. Within two years, he was promoted to local sales manager and was earning Rs 45,000.

Then, in 2012, he met his mother in Agra after many years, a truly emotional moment for the duo.

Unfortunately, the happiness was short-lived as his mother died in a road accident the next day.

Start of A New Beginning 

Seeing the plight of other children collecting garbage and kids doing a rag picker job as he did a few years ago, Dev along with Chandni Khan (who shared a similar story to that of Dev)  decided to start an NGO. But they both had no money.

Inspiring story
Source – Instagram

The two then started going to the slums and started talking to the children. But without money, they could not move forward. 

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However, smartphones opened up new opportunities for them through social media.

Calling themselves ‘Voice of Slum’, they posted pictures of the children and shared them. Soon, they saw good interaction and asked their people to donate Rs 1 to help with their work. Within two hours, they were able to raise an estimated Rs 10,000.

And the two of them, now convinced that they can run the NGO, officially launched the ‘Voice of Slum’ in 2016 in Delhi-NCR.

Voice of slum
Source –Instagram

“Our goal here is not just to educate these children, but to ensure that they can lift themselves out of poverty and transform the next generation of children”

Contribution to the Pandemic 

When the lockdown started, most of the children faced challenges as their parents were unemployed and did not even have the money to support themselves.

Dev bought a pickup truck and donated 2-3 to provide food for the poor. They have been providing food to about 500-1,000 Delhi-NCR people daily.

Through its ‘Voice of Slum, Feed the Slum’ program, the group has provided more than 20 lakh meals since closing the door for the first time in 2020.

In the more deadly second wave, it also distributed more than 60 oxygen cylinders to those in need.

“I will not let them fall in a rag picker spiral

His take on the viral video of ‘Kamlesh’ needs attention too. He says we all might have laughed and shared the video. But it did have a shocking reality to it. What drugs can do to an innocent soul? Everybody who laughed at it must wonder where we as a society are heading. He later plans to eradicate drug abuse. 

Speaking about the upcoming road, Dev says, “We want to open a formal school by 2023 and continue to expand our operations in many areas. We are also continuing our work in Madhya Pradesh and helping many children in the coming days. ”

Dev pratap singh
Source –Instagram

Follow Dev on – Instagram, Linkedin

Support the NGO ‘Voice Of Slum’ – Instagram

The inspiring story of Dev has really moved a lot of people. Mad 4 India wishes Dev and Voice of Slum all the very best in their future endeavors. 

If you loved reading the inspiring story of Dev and his NGO. Inspiring Story Of Sonali, A Mehendi Artist Who Stood Against Society For Her Passion

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