Agape Research Foundation (ARF) is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization. As an organization, ARF promotes religious freedom throughout India, as well as the rehabilitation and education of victims of human trafficking. Most recently, Dr. Victor Joseph, President of ARF, published a report entitled, “Stolen Lives: Dignity, Forgiveness, Hope and Future-Mindedness for Victims of Human Trafficking in India.”ARF is working with Johns Hopkins University to provide a diploma course to train college graduates who will work to rehabilitate and train victims exemplified in the report. The course will cover human rights and socioeconomic empowerment of children and women in the context of religious freedom. ARF believes that creative dialogue between religious, political, governmental and civil society leadership can make a difference to bring peace and stability within society. Increased communication and teamwork, regardless of religious background, is key to long-lasting peace, reconciliation, and prosperity for India.
The HIV/AIDS epidemic is growing at an alarming rate in India. It is estimated that there are more than seven million known cases. By 2015, it is predicted that the number of HIV/AIDS patients in India will be around 20 million. India’s National AIDS Control Organization has classified Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Goa and Manipur as being high prevalence states, in which there is a HIV prevalence of over 1 percent in the population. Christian organizations are the ones who are mainly taking care of this needy group in India. Agape Research Foundation is helping the existing ministries in this area by providing the financial, moral and spiritual support. Millions of dollars are needed every year to run these hospices around the country.
Agape Research Foundation has worked for the past four years to address the issue of religious persecution in India through the Federal government. Religious tensions between Hindus, Muslims, and Christians within India have escalated over the past decade. Agape Research Foundation addressed all cases that came to their attention to the Federal government. Agape Research Foundation stands for a secular India, in which religious freedom and equal justice are prevalent throughout the nation. Some incidents that Agape addressed since its establishment include: religious violence in Gujarat amongst Hindus, Muslims, and Christians; the Emmanuel Mission in Kota, Rajasthan; the anti-conversion bill by the Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh legislative branches; the expulsion of nuns who were ministering to leprosy victims in Gujarat; women who are raped before their children in Madhya Pradesh; a Minister who was murdered in Andhra Pradesh; and other such issues that are continuing to occur for the last many years. Agape worked with the White House and Congress when violence took place in Orissa two years ago. Agape is also working to bring freedom to millions of Dalits who are destined to live in poverty and slavery, without any right to change their religion. More work has to be done in these areas in the coming years. Agape is working in Washington DC through our government to bring religious freedom, human dignity, justice, and also other human rights issues within India. Agape is working constantly with Christian and secular organizations, as well as the government of India to address these issues.
POVERTY AND ORPHANAGE
Agape is also planning to help orphan children in Southern India by taking care of their education and working for a bright future. Agape has a great desire to give comfort and hope to those who are neglected by society due to their social status and poverty. Agape is planning to support orphanages, which have bi-vocational and educational programs. India is the world’s worst offender for human trafficking. By working with the Indian government, ARF aims to help end this terrible practice within India.
Other services Agape Research Foundation seeks to offer include outreach programs to offer job and skill training, business development, social services, leadership development, education, a positive and productive environment by focusing a holistic approach, food for the hungry, shelter and cloths to the needy, and aiding business enterprises.
Agape Research Foundation is focusing on education for the less fortunate and those who do not have access to any education systems. Education is the key to eradicate poverty and social injustice that India is facing. The challenge is huge, where we have more than 445 million children in India.
Agape Research Foundation also aims to provide primary care to by working with existing hospitals and clinics. Due to poor sanitation and malnutrition, providing healthcare resources to many Indians is increasingly urgent. Agape Research Foundation is forming medical groups from the US who can volunteer their time and resources to help the most needy in society.