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Nov 27, 2017

Celebrations, Victory and Glory

Dear Maitri Friend, 

What a wonderful time we have had so far at MaitriGram! To begin with, our students have packed their bags and are waiting to board their trains. What happens next is a series of frisbee matches, and medal and glories. That is just small part of a gamut of activities and celebrations the kids have been involved with. the past few months have been full of events and activities.

The month of September has been full of festivals and holidays for the children. We have three teachers spending time teaching kids from 3 pm to 5 pm every day. They are the dedicated teaching staff who teach children every day. The weather has improved and children are enjoying learning new skills every day.

Teacher's Day And Diwali Cheers

For the preparation towards Teacher’s day on 5th September children made cards for their respective teachers on 1st September. They also prepared a dance for entertaining their teachers which they practiced from 1st to 4th September. The teacher’s day function was very successful and the teachers were very happy with the show the children put up. On the occasion of Dussehra children made cards and the essence of Dussehra was shared through storytelling to celebrate the victory of good over evil. Most of the drawings and cards were put up on the Bulletin Board at Maitrigram ARD Centre which were appreciated by all the visitors. There are currently 73 students in ARD of which 45 are girls and 28 are boys. 1323 number of snacks were distributed in Maitrigram ARD and Sonia Vihar

 For the preparation towards Diwali on 19th October children made cards and did origami. They made various cut outs and drawings of diyas and Diwali. On the occasion of Diwali children shared stories related to Diwali to celebrate the victory of good over evil. Most of the drawings and cards were put up on the Bulletin Board at Maitrigram ARD Centre which were appreciated by all the visitors. Sweets and juices were distributed on Diwali. There are currently 71 students in ARD of which 43 are girls and 28 are boys. 510 number of snacks were distributed in Maitrigram ARD and Sonia Vihar.

 Building a skill 

Sewing classes have been going on with full swing. 33 girls are enrolled currently. They Two batches resumed with the timings being changed as classes reopened for the girls. One batch started from 1.00 pm to 3.00pm and the other from 3.00 pm to 5.00 pm. Girls get fabric from their home or are given by their teacher and they come up with innovative designs and share it with their teacher. Mrs. Shashi (sewing teacher) with her years of experience guided them so well that each one stitched a different piece based on their creativity. Girls were using different kind of fabrics like linen, cotton, net and chiffon. Also, a lot of married women have enrolled as they want to learn stitching become self-reliant for stitching things for their house. Maitri has decided to start a 3rd batch. 15 girls can be taught stitching in one batch, as the teacher wants to focus on each student individually. Exams for sewing classes will commence soon.

 All way to glory and Victory 

Students coached by Govind and Shishir were selected for Ultimate Frisbee Competition held in Lucknow. 10 students travelled to Lucknow with Shishir, Govind and one parent as a local guardian by train on 27th October. The children displayed excellent frisbee skills. They won against some big teams like IIM-Lucknow and even though they lost some matches, they showed true sportsman spirit and came back happily. We are very proud of their accomplishment.

Our students have also participated in inititatives that help strengthen the cities efforts to create awareness against air pollution. 

 Do share the project link with your friends and family and tell them why this project has your heart and what it means to you. Help us spread the word and share our mission with like-minded and passionate people.Thank you for being our pillar of strength! We wish you a great holiday season and lots of love and laughter with your loved ones.

Nov 9, 2017

The power of Celebrations

Dear Maitri Friend,

Amidst struggles and survival, Maitri Ghar  once again witnessed how the power of celebrations can transcend over life and bring different colours.September was the month of festivities and celebrations. Durgashtami and Dussehra were celebrated beautifully by all the widows in Vrindavan and Radha Kund, the two ashrams supported by Maitri India. Widows are discouraged or banned from celebrating festivals which symbolizes the inauspiciousness they apparently bring to holy and happy occasions. Maitri breaks these stereotypes by making participate and lead the different festivals as a mark of making them feel a part of the joyous festivals and occasions enjoyed by the rest of the society. Navratri is 9 days long holy period of fasting which is proceeded by Dussehra, the 10th day which marks the end of evil. According to mythology, King Ravana was killed by King Rama on the 10th day symbolizing the win of good over evil. The eighth day of Navratri celebrations is called Ashtami and is considered as one of the most significant of all the days of festivities and prayers. Devotees maintain a strict fast and worship goddess Durga on this occasion, to mark the victory of the goddess over demon god Mahishasura. According to Hindu mythology, Kali Mata is said to have emerged from the forehead of Durga to kill Chan da and Munda, the demons of Mahishasura. 

The widows celebrated Durgashtami and Dussehra in both ashrams. This year like previous years, Durgashtami and Dussehra were celebrated by the widows with great fervor. They sang hymns and danced together to mark the end of Navratri. Special meals were prepared and they were distributed to the widows along with sweets to celebrate the aforementioned festivals. 66 widows in Maitri Ghar Vrindavan and 62 in Maitri Ghar Radha Kund received 6987 meals and 2924 fruits in September with your support and donations!

The month of October was very exciting. Diwali was celebrated with a lot of festivities by the beneficiary widows. The ashram was decorated with lights and flowers. The widow beneficiaries lit diyas and candles and did pooja to welcome the various Gods and Goddesses on the solemn occasion of Diwali. They all sang bhajans and were served special meals. The police superintendent gifted the widows of Maitri Ghar Vrindavan, shawls and sweets as a gesture of Diwali celebration.

 Apart from distribution of money and gifts, October has been an auspicious month with Diwali and Govardhan Puja. Diwali was celebrated with a lot of festivities by the widows. The ashram was decorated with lights and flowers. The widows lit diyas and candles and did pooja to welcome the various Gods and Goddesses on the solemn occasion of Diwali. They all sang bhajans and were served special meals. The police superintendent gifted the widows of Maitri Ghar Vrindavan with shawls and sweets as a gesture of Diwali celebration.

The Maiyyas were visited by the students of Sri Ram School, Delhi on 28th October to make them feel loved and cherished. The visit by these students really made the Maiyyas very happy. They even danced and sang with the students. Each Maiyya was gifted with a saree, soap, shampoo and a biscuit packet. The students even made drawings of Radha & Krishna and gifted them to the Maiyyas

As a mark of celebration, 63 sarees, 214 hygiene kits and Rs.4250 was distributed as gifts to the widows. The widows thanked the staff and were very happy to receive these gifts.Due to bursting firecrackers, there was a lot of smoke leading to asthma attacks to the vulnerable widows. They had regular medical check-ups to tackle various health ailments. 382 medical checkups were done in September to address their various health issues.

We want to thank everyone and extend the colors of these festivities. Your support has helped us light Maitri Ghar. Thankyou

Oct 26, 2017

When a Woman drives her way to Success and Glory

Dear Maitri friend,

Maitri wants to share a story of success that will inspire generations. Among all our benefeciaries, Maitri wants to take pride in sharing the journey of a woman as a rickshaw puller.

Driving her way; 

This case study is of 25 years old woman who is an e-rickshaw driver from Guddu garage. Maitri is happy tp share  a story of resilience and women power that reflects that when need arises, there is no job a woman can’t do. Also poverty is not only limited to a class that is illiterate, but it can also adversely affect those who are educated and were once well off.

This young   woman is married to one of our benefeciary who works a private coalfieds and earns a meagre amount. They have a son who studies in standard 4.  The couple bought an e-rickshaw on loan and lend it on rent to a person to drive. The purpose was to increase their income and support the family. But the e-rickshaw became a liability for them as it often broke down. The driver who used to run it often came with the e-rickshaw either broke down. He also did not give proper rent amount and never on time. Having faced so much of complications in renting the erickshaw, they decided to stop using the service.

Struggling to make ends meet, She decided to start driving E rickshaw. With her husband's support ,she started driving it.She has been driving e-rickshaw and takes pride in being the only women driver from this garage. She commands respect.

 “I drive daily from 11 am to 6pm in the route from Kutchehry chowk to High court. I earn around 600 INR per day.

I am happy that I made this decision”.

She was a graduate and tried for government jobs as well but could secure none. So in the face of adverse poverty, when her education also could not land her into a job, her good decision making skill and confidence (that she owes to her education only) led herto tread on an unconventioanl path and succeed. She is a shining example of women
power as well as a believer that no work is inferior.

Activities and health camp 

This month, Maitri, Ranchi, was invited to attend a daylong workshop on Basics of Complete Street organized by Institute for Transport & Development Policy (ITDP). Some other ngos like Maitri, CHSJ, Jagori, MHT, and Citizens Foundation were part of the same.

 The workshop involved presentations that discussed the accidental inaccuracy in street design wherein they explained how in designing streets there is often more accidental mistake rather than deliberate ones with examples from different cities; the basic principles of complete street design wherein the principles of street design, elements of street, different street typologies, issues and challenges .

 Such a workshop also helped our beneficiaries to be aware about what complete street is, and involved them in getting important suggestions and inputs for developing a holistic street design manual, which Jharkhand government is going to prepare.

 Apart from this,. This month Maitri organized health camps in Dhananjay Garage, Pawan Garage and Vijay garage. Health is an issue which Maitri looks at very seriously. Owing to their financial limitations and harsh working conditions most RPs and their family cannot afford proper healthcare. Our health camps are a means to bridge the gap in the healthcare system. Regular check-ups have helped the target population get treatment and bring in awareness about their health conditions

 Major cases of body ache; especially leg pain, back pain and whole body pain are seen due to the nature of their job. Due to seasonal change, majority of the Rickshaw pullers were found to be affected by fever and cold. Majority of them have problems of gastric and indigestion as well as worms were common here.

 Thank you for giviging us a platform where we can salute such stories .

We couldn’t do it without your support.

Thank you friend!

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