NGOs to be honoured for exemplary work on women’s issues

Despite efforts at various levels gender disparity in India is still a matter of concern.

Written by Express News Service | Mumbai | Published:February 28, 2009 1:09 am

Despite efforts at various levels gender disparity in India is still a matter of concern. According to a study by Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) and Edelweiss,more than 50% of India’s young girls are still to get into schools in rural areas and one in every seven is married by the age of 13.

In order to bring some respite to the problems of the girl child,TISS,along with Edelweiss Social Innovation Programme has selected nine NGOs from the country who have been actively working for women’s issues. “We started this programme to give recognition to the unique work by the NGOs. They have been actively working to improve the lives of young girls by laying emphasis on health and nutrition,education and employability. Further,we will select three winners from them and give them a prize of $60,000 to carry out their work,” said Aditi Thorat CEO Edelweiss. The winners will be announced on the International Women’s Day observed on March 8.

The NGOs were selected for their unique approach in dealing with the problems of women. A case in point is a Kolkata-based NGO that uses dance and music to rehabilitate and counsel victims of sexual violence. “Dance and other forms of art have a therapeutic effect. It eventually goes a long way to ease the pain,” said Sohini Chakraborty,founder and director of Sanved from Kolkata. The NGOs were selected by TISS after surveys and on field studies on the work conducted by them. “We judged the organisations based on the contextual relevance of their work,sustainability,replicability and direct social impact. We undertook field visits before drawing up the field report,” said Sharwari Karandekar,sociologist from TISS.

The list of NGOs selected
* Society for Social Uplift through Rural Action (SUTRA),Himachal Pradesh- they have designed an innovative community-led approach to tackle female foeticide in rural areas
* Samata,Andhra Pradesh-introduced a ground breaking education and research programme to tackle with child marriage and child labour in India’s tribal communities
* Society To Uplift Rural Economy (SURE),Rajasthan-has developed a fresh model promoting peer learning on health issues among adolescents in the Barner district.
* Society for Rural Industrialisation (SRI),Bihar,Jharkand and Orissa- uses technology in ground breaking ways to transform the entrepreneurial activists among young girls from tribal and other marginalised communities.
* Oasis,Madhya Pradesh-spreading education through the Museum Model to impart interest
* Sanved,West Bengal-uses dance,music therapy to rehabilitate victims of violence and trafficking
* Azad Foundation,Delhi-trains young disadvantaged women as professional taxi drivers
* Ibtada,Rajasthan-has introduced all-women schools for Meo Muslims to suit the needs of the community  
* Aditi,West Bengal- deals with women suffering from any kind of mental illness.

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