The DASF Team
The people behind DASF success are highly committed individuals who strive towards bringing socio-economic changes and improving livelihoods of marginalized farmers.
Founder and Director – (DASF) Deejay Agri Support Foundation
David J Lobo started his business in 1969 and grew it to become the Deejay Group – one of the largest Poultry Farms and Breeding organizations in the Country. He believes, as taught by his father, that there is only one way to do a task, The Best Way. This meant constant learning and constant improvement. In 1983, he started two organizations – The Bridge Foundation and The Deejay Coconut Farm. The former has become a leader in the NGO space, winning awards for the best run NGO among several countries. The latter has become the most recognized Coconut Breeding Project, acclaimed for its ideal Coconut Hybrid Palm, the Sampoorna Hybrid Coconut Seedling. This hybrid palm is the product of preference in India and other countries too. David Lobo is completely focussed on growing and developing Deejay Coconut Farm, he has spoken at several international forums and has signed international joint Ventures for Technical Transfer, as well as the export of seedlings to other countries.
David Lobo noticed that the Bridge Foundation had impacted and continues to positively impact many people, but not in depth. He also noticed how much he had impacted more small farmers through his coconut project. They had put in the effort, the sweat and toil, and had turned their lives around due to superior coconut planting material. Seeing an opportunity for the poor farmer and a gap in the NGO sector, he launched the non-profit Deejay Agri Support Foundation that would be their stepping-stone to a much better life.
Coconut Plantation Expert and Advisor
A finance professional associated with Deejay Group for over three decades, working in various capacities and currently COO of the Deejay Group. Hailing from an agricultural family, over the years he has completely associated himself with farming communities, understanding their needs and serving them to their satisfaction with Deejay Sampoorna hybrid coconut seedlings. Seeing the financial stability and the satisfaction levels of these farmers has inspired him to do more good for the farming community. During this journey, he has come across many small farmers in the rural areas who do not have the opportunity to have two square meals a day because of poor agricultural crops they grow in their meagre land holdings. This has inspired him to provide a solution to these small farmers by supporting them with a small quantity of hybrid coconut seedlings. The coconut tree is“Kalpavruksha” and generates perennial income to the farmer by meeting his minimum monthly income needs. M Murali wants to help reduce the financial stress of as many small farmers as possible, and realise the vision of Deejay Agri Support Foundation.
Agriculturist, Farm Management Specialist and Advisor
John Magesh heads the production department at Deejay Farms and has been involved with the Deejay Group from 2016. A Gold medallist in M. Phil (Natural Resource Management) from Indian Institute of Forest management, he also holds a Masters degree in Forestry from Tamil Nadu Agricultural University. He has more than 12 year experience in the farm/plantation sector. He has been involved in the cultivation of plantation crops, setting up new farms, organic agriculture and supply chain management of agri based raw materials. Prior to joining Deejays, he was involved in overseas projects in West Africa, establishing new farms and developing the cultivation skills of local people. He is passionate about developing models of Sustainable Agriculture Practices as a means of empowering the marginalized farming community towards creating an equitable world to live in.
Social Worker, Activist and Project Head
Dinesh has created numerous social and political campaigns at a national level, his many social media campaigns have gone viral and he was personally acknowledged by Mr. Narendra Modi, the current prime minister of India. He has also worked with award-winning tiger activist, who petitioned against wildlife tourism in the Supreme Court of India to save the tigers. Dinesh was instrumental in creating awareness of the petition through national TV channels and Facebook campaigns that drew attention and debate by renowned activists and media personalities across the world. The Supreme Court finally banned wildlife tourism for three months in India, this shocked the nation and the entire tourism industry, and after new rules and policies were drafted and put in place, the ban was lifted by the honourable Supreme Court.
He recently worked selflessly towards the betterment of marginalised young people in some of the most economically backward districts of Uttar Pradesh in India where the literacy rate is one of the lowest of the country. Dinesh conducted leadership and English camps successfully in order to make the youth able for better education and employment. Dinesh grew up in privileged circumstances, his family were the founding members of the Mysore Race Club and his grandfather was the first Indian to be appointed as the CEO, HAL (Hindustan Aeronautics Limited), Bangalore, India, but Dinesh is motivated by other things, spending days with the poor farmers to understand their unfortunate situation. He joined DASF to support David Lobo’s idea of planting and growing hybrid palms for these farmers to create a regular monthly income and move them out of poverty.