The Revolution is playing– they are going to be in the Limca Book of World Records for being part of the team with the most number of people water rappelling simultaneously! And Sumaiya, 8 years, won the gold medal in the District Level Wushu tournament! August has been a very productive month for learning at Kranti, both for the staff and the Revolutionaries. The entire Kranti team made a trip to Sangli, in rural Maharashtra, to meet the sex workers’ collective, Sangram (www.sangram.org), and learnt about organizing collectives. They had the opportunity to be inspired by empowered sex workers who were aware of and demanded and got their rights . Read our blog (www.kranti-india.org/blog) to find out more about the learning experiences of the Kranti team at Sangram. Two of the Revolutionaries– Aparna and Savita, started high school. Aparna is studying the sciences to pursue her dream of becoming a gynecologist , and Savita is studying commerce because she wants to handle Kranti’s accounts in the future. The staff of Kranti have been undergoing weekly training on counseling children who have faced sexual abuse. From 6-10th September Robin, our founder, will be attending the workshop- “We CAN Deal with Child Sexual Abuse” conducted by Lois Engelbrecht, who has over 18 years of experience in the field of Child Sexual Abuse and has helped set up centers working on CSA in cities across South East Asia. These trainings and workshops will build capacity in the staff to support the Revolutionaries to deal with and overcome Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Our apologies for this embarrassingly late newsletter. We were busy moving mountains and stars!
A month long search and 12 rejections later, Kranti finally has a new home! We have shifted in and made it our own by painting our walls with inspirational, revolutionary quotes and symbols.
June saw the inception of an art workshop and a writer’s workshop for the Revolutionaries. The 3 month long art workshop will culminate in an exhibition and auction of the Revolutionaries’ art work to raise funds to purchase land to build Kranti’s permanent home in the next 12 months.
The writing workshop will help the Revolutionaries express themselves– their past, their future aspirations, their present struggles and achievements. Venting through writing will especially help the quieter Revolutionaries, who are not expressive through speech.
We are also extremely excited to be launching a new scholarship program for marginalized girls who want to go to high school. We are kick-starting our pilot program this month with seven bright girls, eager to study hard, and with revolutionary ideas to change the world!
But most exciting of all! Kranti is barging on to the international media scene! Al Jazeera International is currently in Mumbai shooting a documentary on Kranti to be telecast on their latest series, Save the Women, featuring female activists around the world. The Revolution is launching unto the world!
The very first day of June brought some heavy showers to the city. The revolutionaries danced till they were drenched in the rain. While the rain caused some of them to come down with a very heavy cold and fever, it sure did shower some very positive progresses at the Kranti House.
The first progress was the permission given to Kranti by the Women and Child Welfare Ministry to implement programs in the state run government houses. This has given us a chance to now reach out to many more girls. So Kranti is all ready to ignite the revolutionary spirit in at least a hundred more girls.
Two of our revolutionaries have shown remarkable progress in their respective sports. Sumaiya has knocked up her way to the Wushu tournament and Pinky has qualified for competitive swimming. Now we wait and watch them give their best performance for these next rounds. Looking at their positive spirits, they may just break through!
Robin will be off for a month for an intensive training camp by 'Teach For India'. The camp will be an intensive training program on innovative teaching and education. It also is our first progression of the successful partnership we have accomplished with Teach for India. Surely the experience will benefit all at Kranti.
Kranti has been listed on the website www.ijourneygreen.com. The website offers travel credits to for those interested in traveling. The 'credits' are then forwarded as donations to several NGO's and community projects. So the next time you plan to travel, plan it through iJourney, so your travel helps many others in the journey of their development.
Revolutionary Profile: Aparna
One new revolutionary has just joint us. Aparna, our newest revolutionary is athletic and ambitious. She is very outspoken about her ambitions and will inform everyone with her fiery attitude,"I want to study..I want to be a Gynecologist" . She carries her outspoken nature on her shoulder and won't remain quite if she catches you doing something wrong, even in the middle of the road. We welcome this fiery young revolutionary to our Kranti house.
Kranti has stirred the Indian media this month! We were profiled on www.indianwomenpreneurs.org. But the icing on the cake was our revolutionary rehabilitation model being published by India’s leading newspaper– The Times of India! On the Revolutionary front, April was “Country Month”, where each Revolutionary picked a country and presented about it at dinner every night, expanding their horizons of geographical knowledge and exposure to different cultures. Can you name the capitals of, draw the flags of, identify the people from 17 different countries? The Revolutionaries can! We kick started the month with watching “Ji Jaisi Aapki Marzi” at Prithvi Theater- consists of 4 monologues, played by 4 different women representing the typical relationships that a woman is known through in society, namely, mother, daughter, sister ,wife . This inspired deep conversations amongst the Revolutionaries about the kind of relationships they want to form in life. Thanks to our new partnership with the National Center for Performing Arts, the Revolutionaries were invited to Mudra- a week of Indian classical dance performances to commemorate International Dance Day. This was their first exposure to Indian Classical Dance forms and they were very moved. The highlight of the month, however, was our Volunteers’ Night– a gala Soirée where we invited all our volunteers, and even our virtual volunteers joined us on Skype for the entire event! It was a great opportunity for our volunteers to meet each other and network, as well as for the Revolutionaries to perform for the volunteers to thank them for their time and commitment. And last, but not the least, don’t forget to check out our spanking new website (www.kranti-india.org), created by our genius volunteers, Udit Agarwal and Aditya Keyal. You will also find our Twitter feed on our homepage, so do follow us (Kranti.Mumbai) for updates on Kranti and women’s issues! Revolutionary Quotes ~taking a break from Revolutionary profiles to give you a taste of the conversations at the Kranti home. Sumaiya, 8 years: God would have to wear a Burkha. Savita, 17 years: I could be God. Pinky, 14 years: There are women Gods– Durga, Kali. So what’s the big deal? Lakshmi, 17 years: Adam would have eaten the apple. Sarita, 22 years: Women would be respected more today.
We been talking for months about selling the Revolutionaries’ artwork to generate revenue for Kranti….and it’s no longer just talk!
Kranti has partnered with Lost World Imports, a socially responsible creative arts business. They bought their first consignment of 9 paintings from Kranti for $750, which will be exhibited in Georgia on 17th April. This sale will cover Kranti’s expenses of educating all the Revolutionaries for two whole months!
We are working to launch additional for-profit ventures on our quest for financially sustainability.
Unfortunately, we did not make it to the final round of Echoing Green. But the feedback that we got from the panel will be helpful for us to write better applications in the future.
The Revolutionaries watched two plays this month, which raised many questions in their minds and led to introspective dinner-time conversations: “The Joke”, which questions the existence of God, and “The Vagina Monologues” in Hindi. The Revolutionaries were so inspired that they are taking help from one of our volunteers to write their own version of the “Vagina Monologues.”
Thank you for your continued support and for making all of these successes possible.
Featured Revolutionary: Sarita
Sarita’s passion to revolutionize public school education in India is an inspiration to all the Revolutionaries.
She is the oldest Revolutionary, and also the first to get a job! Along with studying to finish High School, she teaches Primary School children English, Hindi and Marathi, to gain experience for her future role as a public school teacher.
Starting this month Sarita is going to blog daily on our website. Please encourage her by reading and commenting on her posts!
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