Empower girls like Priti in slums in Pune, India

by Karuna Trust
Vetted

Name of Beneficiary:  Komal Bhagnath Satbhaiyya.

Age:  15 years.

Class: 10th Standard.

Name of Community: Katarvasti.         

Since last year the project team has been working in our community. We were curious about life skills classes. The staff did a survey and conducted home visits. They also called a 'parents meeting' to introduce their programme to our parents. Thanks to this, my mother and father allowed me to go for life skills class. All the girls present were very happy and enjoyed the class very much. Apart from the subjects which we learn in our schools, we received information about important issues in our daily lives. i.e. nutrition, hygiene, communication skills, and self-confidence.

We also had the opportunity to visit a police station, bank and an orphanage. These visits allow us exposure wider society and to have confidence to face certain situations. Before this, we only thought about the world that surrounded us and what we knew, but after participating in the different programes I have started thinking beyond these boundaries. For the first time in our lives we entered a police station. We had a chance to interact with the police and allay the fears we previously had about them. In future if we should have reason, we are now capable and confident enough to ask for the help of the police. We also learned what a bank is, and how it functions. We have decided to open savings accounts in future.

We girls like this class very much. Every day we eagerly wait the arrival of our teachers so we can learn something new.

There are 5 of us in my family. My mother is a maidservant, and my father is a manual labourer. My older sister is married and my brother works as a helper at the airport.

I stopped attending school when I was younger, and spent my days at home, where I would do nothing. One day I heard about a stitching course that was being offered and decided to join. I finished that course, but unfortunately I didn’t learn very much. I didn’t feel satisfied with the classes. I was looking for something better.

Then one day, I heard about the stitching classes run by Karuna Prabha’s project team. I also heard very positive things about the quality of the teaching, so I decided to enroll.  It has really helped me to continue to pursue this interest of mine. I am now able to stitch many different types of blouse. I’m even earning a little money from it!

I’m so happy to learn these skills, and very thankful to the teacher and the Foundation for giving me this opportunity.

Thank you so much.

Name:                             Nilophar Nisar Shaikh.

Age:                                18 years

Education:                      12th STD

"First, let me thank you for letting me build my strength and confidence. I quite shy by my nature. After completing 12th standard, I was at my parents home, unsure what to do next. As soon as I came to know a computer course was running, I enrolled my name for it.

Along with computer skills. we also learned about personality development, communication skills, how to prepare our curriculum vitae, and how to handle interviews. All of this information was essential in me getting a job.

Now I am working at Alfa to Sparsh. The computer skills I learned on the course are completely relevant to my work.

There are four of us in my family. My father works as a watchman in the community. After completing the 12th standard, I did not leave my home. I used to help my mother with housework, and I did not think much about any goals for the future. Then one day, a member of the project team came to my house and told me about the vocational courses they are conducting for adolescent girls. My mother was persuaded to let me go with my friends to learn computer skills. 

At the time of joining, I didn't want to do much more than this one class, but the positive atmosphere and encouragement of the whole project made it worthwhile. I learned many other valuable things alongside the computer skills, such as communication skills, and the issues of adolescent marriage in our community.

My mother and father are very proud of my progress.

Thank you to the project and the whole project team. 

It is such noble work to support girls like us, who would otherwise never leave the house, and be dependent upon men for our whole lives. Thank you very much for helping us to become independent. 

Rubina is second from right.
Rubina is second from right.

Name:                     Rubina Chand Patel

Age:                        17 years

Education:              12th STD

Address:                  Phule Nagar, Vishrantwadi.

 Rubina says: “Aap bahot acche ho! Aap ne to hamari zindagi badal dee!!”

(You are all very kind! You have changed our lives!)

"My family has seven members. Father is wage labourer and mother is a house wife. My elder sister is married and my brother is working at 'diamond pool'. My younger brother and sister are in school.

I am in 12th STD in an Urdu school called Anjuman Islam.

One day I came to know about the life skill classes. In our community girls from our religion are not usually allowed out of the house. Fortunately, the life skills class teachers came to my house and my friend’s and persuaded our parents to send us to the classes. We wear our Muslim 'Burkha', and come to class. I don't like to wear it, as it covers our whole body and face.

We started to go to life skills classes which were conducted in a common community space in our neighbourhood.

We very much enjoyed the life skills classes. We received valuable knowledge and information from teachers at the class.  We learnt about the police station and bank; what and where they are. We learnt about the menstrual cycle. We also learnt what child abuse is. All of these things are really important for us to know, but we didn't know anything about these things before. Our parents are also pleased that we have learnt about these things from the classes."

Beneficiary from Stitching Course

Name:                  Rau Ankush Pawar

Age:                      25 years

Education:            5th STD

Address:               Phulenagar, Vishrantwadi, Pune.

Aru Says:              The class is one of the strengthening opportunities for me.

Background:

"We are 4 members in our family. My husband is a driver. I have 2 small children. My education is not much. I left my school when I was in 5th STD because I have to look after my younger sisters. In the age of 17 my parents arrange my marriage. After my marriage I used to sit at home and started loosing my confidence to do something or learn some new skills because of having very less education. One day I heard about stitching class in our community. It seems to get a ray of hope for me. I prepare my mind and decided to go to class to take more information about it."

 Thoughts and Feelings:

"One day I went to the place in my community where the foundation conducts stitching classes. When I went there I told the foundation’s staff about my education. And I got very positive answer which gave me the opportunity to change my future.

The staff of the foundation builds my confidence and told me to join the class though my education was up to 5th STD only. Teacher at the class was very co-operative and patient. They trained illiterate women also.     

Slowly I learn to stitch the blouse and overjoyed. Now I can stitch superior. I am also getting orders of blouse from outside.

I am proud to learn this skill and earn money. My husband is very happy as I am capable now financially.

I also want to learn and stitch Panjabi suits in future."

 

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Organization Information

Karuna Trust

Location: London, England - United Kingdom
Website: http:/​/​www.karuna.org/​
Project Leader:
Steven Murdoch
Staff Member
London, UK United Kingdom

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