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Empowering and Protecting Slum Girls

by Sukarya
Empowering and Protecting Slum Girls
Empowering and Protecting Slum Girls
Empowering and Protecting Slum Girls
Empowering and Protecting Slum Girls
Empowering and Protecting Slum Girls
Empowering and Protecting Slum Girls
Empowering and Protecting Slum Girls
Empowering and Protecting Slum Girls
The Story of Shobha
The Story of Shobha

Shobha hails from West Bengal. Her family had migrated to Gurgaon many years back in search of a livelihood. She lives in an extended family where every member is engaged in some kind of odd employment. Due to difficult financial situation of her family, she worked as a domestic help  to support her mother and could never go to school.  Shobha has also shouldered the responsibility of educating her younger siblings. At the same time she fathoms the importance of education in today’s world and sees it as a bridge between her current state and future dreams.The challenging situations of her life have made her confident and courageous to take the responsibility of alleviating herself and her family from the pains of poverty.

Shobha has been attending the training sessions of Adolescent girls on Reproductive Sexual Health (ARSH) and Family Life Education (FLE) with a hope to make her more empowered and well informed about the internal and external threats of life. From the first day of session, she has been the leader of the group during presentations and activities. She easily grasps things and responds quickly to the given situation. She is so much fond of the session that she encourages other girls of her community to participate in the session. At present for her livelihood, she is taking stitching classes at a nearby centre. She dreams to open her own boutique in near future.

 

Testimonials from other participants:

Razia, 16 years  -  “When I first came for the session, I was very shy in sharing my views on topics discussed, but when I saw my peers actively participating and opening up their minds, I also started the same. Now it has been a month, and I never miss a chance to express my views in front of people.”

 Shumona, 13 years  -  “I have been a regular participant in the training. I am very thankful that through the training I came to know about many do’s and dont’s during menstrual phase. Earlier I was not comfortable in sharing my problems with anyone.”

Jhumpa, 13 years old “This session has totally changed my life, earlier I never respected my parents, and used to leave the house whenever they scolded me. But in the sessions I got to know about family values and importance of family support. Now I do not trouble my parents rather keep them happy.”

 

 Brief Summary of Project Activities:

 

100 Adolescent girls from 2 slum locations are enrolled into the program and monthly sessions are being conducted for both locations on two aspects  – Adolescent Reproductive and Sexual Health (ARSH) and Family Life Education (FLE). Total 4 sessions are conducted in a month and each session consists of  about 50 participants. Parents are also being sensitized on the need and importance of sessions to protect girls from internal and external threats of life.

Group Activity
Group Activity
Sessions on Family Life Education
Sessions on Family Life Education
Sessions on Menstrual Hygiene
Sessions on Menstrual Hygiene

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Kajal
Kajal

Kajal is in a precarious condition. She is a young adolescent living in a vulnerable situation almost everyday of his life. She has many questionsin her mind regarding her grown up status but she can hardly share it with anybody. She faces lewd remarks, teasings and innappropriate touchings on a daily basis when she steps out of her small jhuggi. Few days back when she was going to use the nearby toilet, she was groped by a few men. She cried, she shouted and she pleaded them to stop. Luckily, she was saved by few elderly women who were passing by. The story doesn't end here. This is an ongoing struggle for an adolescent girl living in a slum.

Goal of the Project:

The goal of Sukarya’s Empowering Adolescent Girls through Education project is to make the adolescent girls knowledgeable on reproductive sexual health and build their awareness on physical, social, psychological and moral aspects of life while helping  them develop qualities ,capacities and attitudes so that they can live and lead a successful life on their own.

The objective is to give girls proper access to training so they can communicate with each other and speak for themselves. It is not just about protecting their health or right, it is about improving their self esteem and ensuring that they have a better chance in life. Women are often intimately involved in the running of grass roots organizations, as community mobilizes and so on. All of this helps to make women the agents of change. These girls are no exceptions. Kajal is just one of them.

Key Project Objectives:

  • Provide basic Knowledge and Awareness to adolescent girls [11-19 yrs age group] on Reproductive and Sexual health.
  • Build their knowledge and Skills on Family Life aspects [Physical, Social, Psychological and moral dimensions] to relate, understand and cope up with challenges to lead a better and healthier life.
  • Educate and inform them about Safety measures to avoid social risks and threats.

Project Location- 2 slums of district Gurgaon.

Project Period- 1 yr [yearly extension]

Expected Outcome:

  • Around 100 Adolescent Girls to be empowered on reproductive health aspects and Family life dimensions.
  • Adolescent girls to be able to live a healthier life and remain well informed about internal and external threats of life and future challenges.
  • To ensure overall health and gender empowerment would be ensured to creating a healthier and equitable community.

Implementation:    Key Progress for  first two months Preparatory phase - April and May 2017

  • 2 slum locations have been identified [Saraswatikunj and Neemthala] of Gurgaon for the implementation of the project.
  • Need assessment and listing /household survey were done and lists of adolescent girls [11-19 yrs] have been prepared.
  • Numerous home visits were done to convince their parents to allow their daughters to participate in training sessions.  
  • Health Educator /Trainer and FLE teacher /Resource person have been put into the panel to conduct training and counselling sessions.
  • Course curriculum, learning content and resource materials have been procured and developed.

Training details are as follows, 

  • The first round of training was conducted on 24th May focusing on the relevance of good health, adolescent age, physical and behavioural changes with the growing age, and how can we overcome the challenges of this age.
  • A total of 40 girls between age group of 11-19 years from slums of Gurgaon (Neemtala, Saraswati Kunj) participated in the training with full eagerness to learn something new. To make the session more effective and productive, all the girls were divided into groups of 4. To break the ice, few group activities were done, which led to some sort of familiarity and open communication among the girls.
  •  At the beginning, a brief description about what is adolescence and what are the physical and emotional changes related to it was discussed with the girls citing everyday examples. The next activity was to brief them about different aspects of health - social, mental, and physical in which the girls participated very actively.  
  • Towards the end, presentations were made by each group about all what they learned during the session. This session helped the girls to be more proactive in sharing their thought process and led their groups for the presentation round.

Conclusion: It was a good start for the year long session. The motto was to help the adolescent girls gain knowledge and awareness about their physical and mental health status and prepare them to foresee the challenges to be faced during the adolescent phase of their life so that they can live it through successfully on their own. 

Girls engaged in their group work for the project
Girls engaged in their group work for the project
Ice-breaking activity
Ice-breaking activity
Happy after making the presentation
Happy after making the presentation
The team gears up for making the presentation
The team gears up for making the presentation

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Organization Information

Sukarya

Location: Gurgaon, Haryana - India
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @sukaryango
Project Leader:
Shipra Shukla
Gurgaon, India

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