Centre for Women’s Development and Research Life Skill and Sexuality Education for 1000 Girls-India (14480) Update- September 2016
During the last 3 months our focus was more on career guidance and college admissions. In our working area 105 girls passed 10th standard board examinations and are continuing their education. In 12th standard 90 girls passed their board examinations but only out of which only 18 girls could able to continue their college education. Many of the girls could not go for college because of their low marks and poverty. Because of low marks they could get only admission in private colleges, there the fees are very high Rs.30000-50000. So in the coming years we are planning to focus on supplementary education support so that they can score high marks in their 12th standard examinations. In fact, we were also educating about the different short term skill trainings that they can finish it and get employment easily, but since the training centres are slightly far away from their homes and most of them of first generation school goers somehow they want to become a university graduate.
Selfie of Spoken English Class by Loyola college students
We could able to provide full scholarship supports for 3 girls, one joined for B. Com, another B.Sc.(Bio-Chemistry) and another in B.C.A. In addition to that we have given Rs.3000 as motivational scholarships for 10 girls who joined for degree courses. During this period, we have opened 3 recreational learning centres in city area. In Ezhil nagar slum the slum clearance board had allotted a place for our training centre. This is a recognition for our work with flood affected people shifted to Ezhil nagar. These 3 centres helped us to reach out to more girls. We have been conducted weekend, life skill and sexuality education workshops for adolescent girls. In both rural and urban area 365 girls participated in these workshops. Usually we conduct tuition classes for 10 and 12th standard girls from January to March that is 3 months before their board examination. Since we have 3 new centres and 1 rural centre we have decided to conduct supplementary education classes on regular basis. We have bought text books and books related to their syllabus and kept it in the centre. Our field workers are also motivating them to use online resources to learn further. We are also continuing out school based sexuality education programme. During this period, we have organized sexuality education programme in 2 schools nearly 300 girls and 150 boys benefited from these programmes. In rural are we have also organized organic kitchen garden programmes for adolescent girls and motivated them to have kitchen gardens in their homes. 45 girls benefitted from this programme and created kitchen gardens in their homes. In addition to this we have organized painting, drawing workshops, folk dance and street play workshops. 68 girls benefitted from these programmes. We have organized spoken English classes in Mylopore centre with the help of 2 Loyola college MSW student 35 girls benefitted from this programme.
Girls meeting in Mylapore
We have also organized parent’s meetings in 32 slums and 15 villages mostly to discuss about the girl children’s education. Most of the parents are disappointed that they could not able to send their daughters who had passed 12th standard to colleges. Since most of these girls are 17-18 years of age, if they sit at home parents would immediately think about their marriage. In fact, the cost of the one-day wedding function would be more than that of the three-year degree course fees. So We are trying to educate parents about this and the importance marrying the girls at 21 years or after that. We have also provided information about the government schemes and scholarships provided by government and other organizations. We are also exploring ways of creating a saving scheme or some finance scheme particularly support girl children’s higher education.
Centre for Women’s Development and Research
Chennai Floods- Help rebuild the lives of 3000 children.
GlobalGiving Update September 2016
Last 3 months that is from July 2016 onwards our focus was more on girl children’s education and long term strategies to handle disaster situations. Our relief activities have almost completed and stopped because of the funding crunch, that is with limited resources we could only reach out all the people in our working slums. Mostly our focus was on adolescent girls and women who are part of our CBOs-Community Based Organizations. Since the monsoons are nearing people are living with fear because nothing much to mitigate the floods were done by the government, waterways were not cleaned and deepened, rain water drainage system work is not completed and not reached to places vulnerable to floods. 1000 families severely affected by the floods are shifted to new rehabilitation housing centre at Ezhil nagar. No additional support for their livelihood are not given by the government. In Ezhil Nagar the slum clearance board had allotted a place for us, even though it is small place we are running our recreational learning centre for adolescent girls here. We can also organize small group of 10-15 women’s meeting. This allotment is also recognition for our work in Ezhil Nagar. As usual women are playing major roles in these situations like make sure children get food, goes to schools, medical help if family members are sick. Most of their household’s things lost, work is lost but women make sure the family is running they find work, they collect ration and relief materials in short provide health, education and social security to their family members.
We have organized regular meetings of our CBOs-Community Based Organizations, Manushi- the domestic worker’s association, Maithri-Single women’s association and Snehidhi-Adolescent girl’s association. Nearly 900 women participated in these slum level meetings from 32 slums. Mostly getting rehabilitation support, government schemes, children’s education and improving income were discussed in these meetings. Another important issue discussed the coming monsoon and their expectations. In Ezhil nagar a Kannagi nagar Velacherry, Sholinganallur slums we have organized workshops of Entrepreneurship skill training for women and 62 women participated in these workshops. Out of these 20 women were given financial support to start their own business like snacks selling, flower garland making, fruits and vegetable selling. For other women we are exploring ways of getting finance support like loans to start some small business.
Ms.Jayanthi is a single mother actually deserted by her husband, she is just 27 years but has 3 daughters 9 years, 7 years and 4 years old. She has no brothers and no support from her family. She lives in Kannagi nagar slums. Her house is also affected by the floods. In the morning she works as a domestic worker and earns Rs.1500per month, it is very hard for her to manage the family. During floods she also lost one month’s work because during that time she did not go for work. She is a member of our ‘Maithri’ single women’s association and active in helping other women. So to improve her income we have provided her some help to buy a push cart with that she runs an evening snack shop. With that now she earns additional Rs.3000 and somehow manages the family. Apart from the financial support Maithri also provides psychosocial counseling for single women.
During this period, we have initiated 3 recreational learning centres. Nearly 180 girls benefit from these centres. There adolescent girls learn computer skill training, supplementary education support and life skill and sexuality education. In addition to that they also play games, learn folk dance songs, do drawing painting, all these activities also serve as counselling for these children. Even after 8 months of floods, even today if we ask them to draw most of them draw about their flood experience.
In the Velachery centre girls learn folk dance Thappattam, and in Mylapore centre they learn street play. 48 girls participate in these workshops. They are developing plays and songs to use it in the coming Campaign to eliminate violence against women. Since it is college admission period we have also organized career guidance workshops for girls completed their 10th and 12th standards. 90 girls participated in these workshops. 3 girls were given full scholarships to join college degree courses one for B. Com course, one for BCA and another for B.Sc.(Bio-Chemistry) courses. In addition to that 10 girls who scored above 90% were given Rs.3000 each as motivation support to continue their college education.
Since November month is nearing that is monsoon is nearing women already started worrying about the floods it is expressed in all the slum level meetings so we are planning to organize disaster management workshops for women.
Centre for Women’s Development and Research Life Skill and Sexuality Education for 1000 girls-India (14480) Update- June 2016
Last 5 months is an important period for us, our working areas were affected by the disastrous rain and floods during November –December 2015, so we could not continue our usual activities and mostly involved in flood relief and rehabilitation activities. Comparing to our target slums the villages are not affected much. Still schools were closed for more than a month during November-December, our staff members could not travel to the working areas. All these affected our Life skill and Sexuality Education programme. We were busy addressing the needs of adolescent girls affected by the floods and provided learning materials liked notebooks, pen and pencil and also dresses and sanitary napkins to both rural and urban area girls. Snehihi-Adolescent girl association members also played an active role in in relief and rehabilitation activities. They conducted village and slum level surveys to find out the needs of affected people and also organized the distribution of relief materials. After the floods school final examination started and schools were functioning overtime including Saturdays to complete the syllabus. It is only after the State Elections during May people are back to normal and we also could able to implement the programmes as usual.
We could not able to organize tuition classes before the final examinations that is January to March. Usually we organized this in collaboration with the school teachers and the tuition classes were conducted in the school premises. So our staff members organized tuition classes for 10th and 12th standard classes in the villages. 42 girls benefitted from this programme. We have also organised 2 training programme for girls those who attend the public exam about pre preparation of mind, reduce fear and how to get more marks, manage the time, yoga and meditation. 58 girls participated in this programme. In the rural area 30 girls appeared for the 10th standard examinations and 25 girls passed and Ms.Ravinadevi scored 451/500, and 33 girls appeared for 12th standard examinations 30 girls passed. In the urban area’ out of the 86 girls who appeared for the 10th standard board examinations; 80 were passed and continuing their education. In the 12th standard board examinations 65 girls appeared and 60 girls passed.
But the floods and school holidays for over a month during that time reflected in their marks, most of them just passed scoring 40-50%, so it is very difficult for them to get college admissions, particularly in government colleges where the fees is low. We are looking for ways to help these girls continue their education up to graduate level.
We have organized weekend life-skill and sexuality education for adolescent girls, 145 girls from rural area 380 girls from urban slums benefitted from this programme. We have organized sexuality education training for boys, we have organized 4 weekend trainings and 148 adolescent boys participated in these trainings. They learned about gender, sex, sexuality and violence against women and men. In addition to that we have also organized 3 days life skill and sexuality education programme during school holidays, 67 girls participated in these programmes. We have also conducted life skill and sexuality education in the schools, nearly 400 girls and 200 boys benefitted from this programme. During schools holidays we have also organized two street play and folk arts trainings, one in rural area and one in urban area. 48 girls participated in these programme. They performed street plays and folk dance in the villages and slums educating public about the importance of girl children’s rights particularly girl children’s education and requested parents to enrol children in schools.
Employability skill training for adolescent girls: We have organized two five weekends training on employability skills. More than 100 girls those who are studying 10th -12th and college going girls were benefited from this programme. They learned communication and leadership skills and improved their confidence. As part of the programme we have also provided career guidance to the girls.
Maheswari (18) is a very active leader in Snehidhi adolescent girls group. Her mother is a single women. She has one elder sister and a younger sister. She is living in Kadapakkam village , In higher secondary , she scored 848 marks and was good and intested in mathamatics. In her community girls are not allowed for higher education. After finishing 10th, her mother planned to stop her education because of their poverty and being a single women she is more concerned about her daughters marriage Our staff members and Snehidhi leaders approached Maheswari’s mother motivated her mother to allow Maheswari continue her educaiton. We have also provided Rs.1000 per year as support and motivation to continue her education. Now she has joined for B.Sc computer science in Govindasamy Governemnt College in Tindivanam. That is quiet far, she travel 3 hours up and down by bus. We are providing a monthly stipend of Rs.500 per month as a motivation for her to continue her education.
Life skill & Sexuality Education in Government School
Gender training for boys