Written by D Kumar, Akkala Srinivasa Reddy and Nancy
Translated and Edited by Debaleena Bagchi
On the occasion of International Women’s day, Kaithwalya Hub Centre in Ghazipur district held an elaborate celebration to commemorate its women participants and its students for their outstanding contributions.
Our SoochnaPreneurs also addressed the women at the centre and spoke to them about their rights and laws that guarantee those. After this, the students who come to the centre to learn computer skills addressed the people at the centre through a presentation on women who have dedicated their lives to the betterment of society. The students spoke of Mother Teresa, Savitribhai Phule, Rani Lakshmi Bai and of many such women who have inspired countless others through their work, fearlessness and dedication. Some students even recounted their own stories of overcoming hurdles and cited them as examples of female agency.
The same celebratory atmosphere could be seen at our center in Suleripalya village in Karnataka. Fifty-two women from different collectives such as self-help groups, ASHA workers, Anganawadi teachers and Health department officials participated in this celebration of International Women’s Day.
Here, in recognition of how important it is to not just celebrate women for their contributions but also make them aware of their constitutionally-granted rights, Ms Shobha, a local police constable, spoke to the women about rights, laws, the illegality of child marriages and encouraged conversations about gender equality. Alongside, Ms Indukumari, a staff from the local health department, addressed the still-prevailing concerns of female-foeticide and reemphasied the fact that sex determination of the foetus is illegal in India.
Similar conversations were encouraged at our Centre in PHC, Vetapalem in Andhra Pradesh. The main theme for the celebration here was “Gender Equality Today for a Sustainable Tomorrow” and this motivated the sixty-seven participants to engage in dialogues about how important gender equality is to cultivating sustainable living practices for our future.
Celebrating International Women’s Day with our participants brought us a lot of joy. But, we also know that just one day a year is not enough to eliminate the gender biases that our society is riddled with. That is why, we are determined to continue to spread awareness about women’s issues so that we may advance towards a gender equal society.