Karuna Trust

Our vision is of a world without prejudice, in which every human being has the opportunity to fulfil their potential, regardless of their background or beliefs. We aim to do this by challenging the ignorance and prejudice that trap people in poverty.
Jun 27, 2011

Adolescence in India

I came across some insightful information on a UNICEF blog about adolescents in India. Here are some interesting facts from that blog:

* India has the highest adolescent population in the world

* It is still the case that boys enjoy a higher quality of adolescence than girls

* The biggest health problem for Indian female adolescents is Anemia - about 50% of girls aged between 15-19 in India are anemic. 

* The risk of HIV is significantly higher amongst adolescent females than adolescent males 

Karin Hulshof, UNICEF India Representative concluded that - 

The available data shows that maximum adolescence today, do not get to enjoy or have access to quality education, basic sexual reproductive health care, support for mental health issue and disability and protection from violence, abuse and exploitation and a forum for their participation. 

Links:

Jun 27, 2011

Big Changes

 Prakash, leader of the project in India, tells us about the biggest changes that he has seen during his time there:

 

Question: What are the biggest changes that you have seen during the years of being involved in the project?

 

Answer: 

 When we started our work we could see many  young children are with their mothers in the Bidi factories when she was rolling bidies.  Children sleep, eat, play in the tobacco atmosphere which was hazardous for their health.  Not only that but children were exposed to tobacco dust since they are in mother’s womb.  But due to continuous awareness and motivation now bidi rollers understands the dangers of tobacco and keep their children either in pre-school centres or at home, when they role bidies. 

Earlier when we used to asked mothers about future of their children, particularly girls, they use to say that she will roll bidies.  But if you ask any woman in NISD Project area  she will say that I don’t want to bring my daughter in this hazardous work i.e. bidi rolling. 

Earlier Money Lenders were very common in these villages.  They used to give loans ( on very high interest rates) to these women and exploiting them.  NISD started Self Help  Groups in these villages and now there are around 100 Self Help Groups in our project villages.  These SHGs now cater the loan need of these women and money lending system is abolished completely in NISD’s project villages. SHGs not only fulfilled monetary needs but also built their unity and solved number of social and other problems of women and children of these villages

 

With your continued support, we can carry on bringing about meaningful and lasting change.

Jun 20, 2011

Breaking the cycle

Prakash, the project leader was kind enough to answer some questions that I asked him about his involvement and experience with the project.

 Question: How and why did you become involved in this work?

Answer: 

After completing my MA in Economics I decided to go for Master of Social Work (MSW).  After receiving MSW degree I worked with grass root NGO for 4 years, funding organisation for another four years and there after decided to start a small work where I can use my education, experience and knowledge for the betterment of down trodden people of my area.  I belong to Sangamner area so I started my work there.  Since my child hood I was seeing processions and marches of Bidi Rollers for their lawful rights and was slightly aware with their problems.  Sangamner is a pocket where bidi business is concentrated and women of  around 50 villages are earning bread by rolling bidies.   In the initial stage I got support from OXFAM to conduct an action research on Problems of Bidi Rollers which helped me to learn more about their problems .

Question: What is your vision for the children involved in your project?

Answer: 

Bidi Rolling is a cycle and after mother or mother-in-law the daughter or daughter-in-law take over this work.  I thought that NISD was small agency so we couldn't provide meaningful employment to bidi rollers to keep them away from hazardous work.  But we can bring some comfort in their lives by way of taking different activities.  However I was very sure that we can at least save the lives of young generation and stop them to come in this business. This is possible by taking steps on children’s health, education and skill building program.

My and NISD’s  vision is “We want a world where inequality based on class, gender and religion is absent and no person will get exploited by any one.  We want a world where basic needs become basic rights and where poverty and all forms of exploitation are eliminated.  Each person will have the opportunity to develop her or his full potential and creativity, which will lead him/her towards sustainable development.”

donate now:

An anonymous donor will match all new monthly recurring donations, but only if 75% of donors upgrade to a recurring donation today.
Terms and conditions apply.
Make a monthly recurring donation on your credit card. You can cancel at any time.
Make a donation in honor or memory of:
What kind of card would you like to send?
How much would you like to donate?
  • $15
    give
  • $25
    give
  • $50
    give
  • $100
    give
  • $150
    give
  • $200
    give
  • $15
    each month
    give
  • $25
    each month
    give
  • $50
    each month
    give
  • $100
    each month
    give
  • $150
    each month
    give
  • $200
    each month
    give
  • $
    give
gift Make this donation a gift, in honor of, or in memory of someone?