Shelter Associates (SA ) is a small Pune-based NGO, headed by Pratima Joshi and Srinanda Sen who are architects and planners. Shelter Associates works in partnership with Baandhani, an organisation of collectives of women and men slum dwellers, to facilitate and support community housing and infrastructure projects. It works on the philosophy that poor people are the best people to find solutions to their housing problems, therefore Shelter Associates and Baandhani work together to empower poor communities to seek solutions for themselves. As part of this process, communities have worked on collecting information about their settlements and other slum settlements in Pune, and this information has been one of their strongest negotiating tools.
This article is co-authored by Srinanda Sen and Jane Hobson . Sen is an architect-planner, co-founder and co-director of SA) and Hobson is a geographer-planner who worked previously for SA and now volunteers alongside teaching) Valuable inputs have been made by Pratima Joshi ( architect ,co-founder and co-director of Shelter Associates.)