WE BELIEVE - WHEN WOMEN ARE EMPOWERED, ALL OF SOCIETY BENEFITS.
Shakti means energy. One of the many reasons to name our initiative Shakti is so that women from all walks of life can connect to it. Unfortunately in India – where we worship deities in their female form; it stops there. Women in India are denied the most basic rights – Education, Health, Employment & Status. With SHAKTI – The Power of Empower; we aim to empower & educate women to help them gain their rightful place in the society.
SHAKTI project is our initiative to inform, inspire and empower adolescent girls, young women, widows and even old-ages women. We believe that when we help women and empower them, the whole society benefits; their families are healthier, their children go to school, income levels improve and communities become more prosperous. To improve the life of these women and the people around them, empowering them with the gift of knowledge is something we strive for. Educating these women of their basic rights, sanitation and health to start with is also a means of empowerment.
Under “SHAKTI” project, we carry out many Vocational Training programs to enhance their skills and to help them get employment. These programs offer alternative education opportunities for women and girls who have never been enrolled or have dropped out early from school. We provide training programs like various embroidery techniques, stitching, computer classes, tie-dye, cooking, etc. We also do various Life Skill Programs to boost their self confidence & self esteem.
Apart from “SHAKTI” project, our other main focus is on Menstrual Health & Hygiene Awareness. We have seen how young girls go through several kinds of changes during adolescence. These changes are physical, mental and emotional. However, she also begins to face social taboos and restrictions associated with menses. The depressing reality for this girl, who will soon be a woman, is that there is no discussion on the subject at home, at school, or amongst friends. She is often scared, and at times confused. But, she is almost always silent. The ‘GIRLS TODAY, WOMEN TOMORROW’ project is hoping to break the silence around this misconstrues taboo. We carry out this project in various municipal/government schools where it is required the most. This project touches the lives of many young teenagers who are going through a critical transition period in their lives. The project aims to make them aware of the changes they are going through or will go through sooner or later, and will impart information and knowledge to these girls about the facts and myths associated with this critical event in their lives.
Apart from these projects, we also work for following causes:
- Breast Cancer Awareness - Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in women. Most women are not even aware about Breast Cancer and the ones who are aware are not well-informed to recognize the early signs of cancer. Through this campaign we ought to bring awareness to women by showing them how to self-examine and what to look for, early signs of cancer and how it looks like and what to do to ensure proper treatment and survival.
- Good touch, Bad touch - In today’s times, we hear a lot about child abuse and molestation. Every single day, the media reports such cases where young children, both boys and girls, are sexually abused by an adult around them. The problem is, that they do not even know what is happening. It is still a sensitive topic for parents to talk to their children, so most of them do not want to go there. The same goes for schools as well. At times, we hesitate to take up and speak on such sensitive topics. But, the fact remains that it is very important for the betterment of our young children that they know about all this and can deal with it if they ever come across a situation like this. What is good touch bad touch? Our goal here was to inform/educated young girls about the dangers and what to do if ever face a situation like this.
- Self-Defence workshop for Adolescent Girls in Slums
In the near future we plan to start a various small production units on the lines of Gruh – Udyog business structure. This will generate employment for the women from the economically backward classes. Apart from helping them gain a livelihood – this will aim at giving them the courage and confidence to be more independent and gain their own identity. This will lead to a paradigm shift in their lives to make their own individual choices and live a life that they have aspired of.
A woman needs to voice her opinions, more importantly towards what is good or bad for her. Many a times they cannot because of their financial dependency. This leads to a downfall in their dignity and respect in the society. The moment she starts being more financially self reliant it boosts her confidence. This confidence becomes her pathway to have a control over her own livelihood, leading to life of respect and dignity that she deserves.