A District with 38000 square Kilometer of area the third largest District of India. Empty roads where you can Die in lack of water or can be lost in desert. It is Jaisalmer. It have the density of people 17 per KM2 whereas in Delhi it is 17000 Per KM2. Government is struggling to provide basic needs of Health and Education in this area. Still a big number of unenrolled children and people are not preferring institutional deliveries.
After Covid 19 negative impacts it was found that more than 20% Girls are going to drop out from the basic education. It is due to Safety norms by society and government, Economical issues, Lack of importance of education, Child marriages etc. While working in the district it was difficult for me to ensure the well being of this girl children. They are lacking in education, Health, in rights, basic necessities and in basic independence. Overall they are lacking in availing there Life chances. In lack of all this they will surely not growing towards a better future and becoming a supportive youngster for the nation.
Surely It was becoming a biggest need of Jaisalmer to consider. Piramal foundation started a campaign Saksham Bitiya abhiyan to ensure well being of Girls education. According to this work should be done on improving Life chances and Life skills of girl children through various Activities. This sessions helps Girls to understand there rights, there values, there responsibilities and there independence.
We set a target of reaching 55 Thousand adolescents girls through this. As we all know it is hard to reach each and every girl in the District because the sand dunes and army area restrictions and army barricades. We initially generated 50+ volunteers and started executing’s this. We found higher interest among girls for that. We initiated it in campaign mode and through social media platform we reached 100+ volunteers to work for this life skill activities soon we reached 1000+ girls of the district but it was not sufficient. We decided to take support of District administration. In first we make agreement with Health department because they have there Grass root workers as ASHA and Aganwandi Karykarta in villages of Jaisalmer. Through this approach we trained them and they executed life skill sessions, but it was not sufficient as 30 Gram Panchayat out of 140 Gram Panchayat do not have Internet connections. we are missing with at least 300+ villages. Later on we took support of Education department and as they have regular follow up mechanism for grassroot schools. We successfully added 10000+ Girls with this practice. Later on We partnered 10+ Local, national and International NGOs working in that area to support us in that campaign. We Also collaborated some SHG Groups, some Nehru yuva Kendra volunteers, skill India students, Local Collages and Tourists. We collaborated with Panchayat raj institutions and make an agreement with Sarpanch to let this message explore in all villages. Due to this huge efforts currently we are working with 15000 Girl children and training them on improving life chances.
I am sharing words of girl name Rukma from kotdi.
Rukma is 15 year non school going girl. Out volunteers tried to talk with her and said her to join us for session but her father denied. She raised by her Father only. Father works in Stone mines and consume alcohol and beats Rukma. She leaves in isolation from all village. Her house is also in side of village. She is considered as low caste community. Our volunteer Pinki has some conversation with her and found that she is in desperate need of this support. Pinki is not able to forget her face and shared with us. We told her to go to her with some stakeholders. She tried to go to her house with ASHA karykarta but she completely denied to come and even her father shouted and scolded Pinki and ASHA. Later on after discussing in village it was found that her marriage is fixed and she got married after 11 days. Pinki was furious on this exploitation and she talk with sarpanch. Sarpanch accompanied them to Rukma house and not only the marriage is stopped but also she is enrolled for the life skill sessions. Pinki was highly happy to see the way rukma is engaging. In 11th day of session Rukma said ” Mane school Jano hai, mane bhi padhano hai, mane futro (achha) lage”. Pinki eyes was in tears at that time and whenever she share this she starts crying. Rukma is enrolled in near by Upper primary school.
That’s how flower bloomed in Desert with the shower of sweat.
Thinking of sharing with you all so that instead of thinking of our own capability we should work for betterment of society.