Empower differently abled women to live independently
Rathnamma, a resident of Sindagi Taluk in Bijapur District, became orthopedically impaired a year after she was born as she didn't receive the polio vaccination. Due to her disability and lack of facilities in the village, Rathnamma couldn't attend school, even though she wished to study. Rathnamma, with a passion to learn something new and become independent, learnt stitching and started to earn a little income. This is when she came across a nonprofit volunteer who helped her move to Bangalore and find a job at "Ability in Disability" (AID) an ancillary unit of BOSCH, Singasandra.They contacted Mitra Jyothi to help Rathnamma find accommodation. Rathnamma joined CEWD in April 2017 and continues to work in AID. She is one of the happiest women residing in the Hostel. She finds satisfaction in her achievements and lives happily.
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What the beneficiary gets
The discrimination that women with disabilities face in the rural and remote areas triggered the inception of The Centre for Empowerment of Women with Disability (CEWD) by Mitra Jyothi. The social evils prevalent in rural areas with the lack of education and high level of exploitation, makes the lives of women in general and especially women with disabilities extremely difficult.
Families constantly compare girls with disabilities and discriminate them from their siblings. They also discourage the girl child from going out and pursuing education due to various reasons. Apart from ignorance, genuine reasons for concern are the security hazards faced by girls in general and those with any kind of disability in particular.
CEWD serves as a home away from home for these girls. The expected outcome of this facility is to provide shelter for and support 50 women with disabilities who are keen to pursue higher education or are working and in need of accommodation. The Centre also organises activities on need basis to ensure the upliftment of women with disabilities.
30 September, 2021
Women with disabilities can now get wider access to opportunities
Mitra Jyothi provided 15 visually impaired women during the last six months with Computer training, Mobility, Educational assistance, and Maths and English Classes. They made the best use of their COVID-19 academic break to undergo these classes. Our trainees belong to different parts of the country, with a majority from South India. Mobility and English classes enable these young visually impaired women to be more confident and communicate effectively. Inmates were very happy and motivated when they had an interactive session with Ms Dhanya Ravi on 15th February at Mitra Jyothi. Dhanya Ravi suffers from osteogenesis imperfecta (OI), a rare disease due to which she has suffered more than 200 fractures since birth. She talked about overcoming laziness, not entertaining lazy thinking, self-discipline, reflective thinking, and avoiding negative thoughts in the session. The session was an eye-opener, and the students felt touched by Dhanya's journey. Amidst the pandemic, these inspiring girls participated in numerous activities. Anneyamma, studying in 2nd-year B.A. in a government college, went to Kanteerava stadium as part of the NSS team and participated in rock climbing activity. A Mitra Jyothi inmate for four years now, Anneyamma, through her rock-climbing, proved that physical limitations do not matter if you have dedication. Mitra Jyothi’s success and satisfaction is based on the success attained by people like Anneyamma.We are sure that the support of well-wishers, and the experience they gain at Mitra Jyothi hostel, will help these girls achieve their goals and succeed in life.\n","section":"Activities and work undertaken in the last 5-6 months","question":"
\n 1. Please tell us what activities you have undertaken in this program in the last 5-6 months.You can refer to following pointers as\n
- Any milestones achieved? \n
- Any major events? \n
- Areas covered (cities, states, regions etc) \n
- Number of people impacted? \n
- How were they impacted or helped? \n
Due to the lockdown restrictions put in by the state government, inmates went back to their homes to spend time with their families and well-wishers for around 40 days during May and June 2021. We were guiding them over the phone and assisted them based on their need. We restarted the residential facility full-fledged by mid-June 2021 and the inmates are now back. In the upcoming months, we are planning to conduct more interactive sessions, analyse each women’s weak areas and plan for training/guidance accordingly.\n","section":"Challenges faced and next steps","question":"
\n 2. Challenges in utilising funds/carrying out operations. Please refer to following points for reference:\n
- Any challenges faced? \n
- Any covid related hurdles? \n
- How did you overcome it? \n
- What is your goal/aim/activity plan for the next 6 months for this program? \n
Story of Ummukulsu: From an expanse of darkness to a colourful world!Ummukulsu is a strong fighter in life who was born blind in an economically weak family. It was not a shock for her parents when she was born with vision impairment, as they had a family history of blindness. She was raised by a blind father and a non-blind mother along with other four siblings in a Panchayat in Kozhikode district of Kerala. Of the four other siblings, one brother and sister also had vision problems at birth.Ummukulsu is such a cheerful and enthusiastic girl, who overcame all the hurdles in life through positive thinking since her childhood. She completed her primary education in a special school but opted for a normal school for high school education. It was really a turning point in Ummukulsu’s life, as she had always spent her time with other visually challenged people, both at home and in school. Initially, she had to face many emotional and physical challenges to get adjusted to that new environment. She still remembers that, initially, some of her classmates were hesitant to get along with her as they were afraid that they might have to always take care of her if they became friends. However, gradually she proved her independence and won the hearts of classmates and teachers through her jovial nature and positive thinking.In school, she faced some difficulties in understanding mathematics. Despite all these difficulties, she cleared her SSLC examination with first-class marks. Even though she had to suffer a bit in the initial days during her high school education, Ummukulsu says that the decision to study in an inclusive school helped her a lot in attaining many social skills. She explains this in her own words “ I had no idea about how to tackle the issues in the world of people without disabilities, and my high school education trained me well in those aspects also. We have to anyway go out to grow ourselves, we also have to live in the same world, and hence it is better to familiarize ourselves with that world at the earliest” From a well-wisher, she came to know about the residential computer programme offered by Mitra Jyothi and opted for it. The three months stay at Mitra Jyothi not only helped her learn more about computers but also assisted her in improving her English, social skills and personality development. Her time at Mitra Jyothi is her first experience away from her native place, but she never felt that distance because of the homely atmosphere in Mitra Jyothi. We would like to conclude her story with her own words: “When I was born, no one would have expected that I could even complete my primary education, but God helped me reach here, and I am not going to stop here, I have a long way to go!”\n","section":"Stories from the ground","question":"
\n 3. Any beneficiary impact story you would like to share?\n"}],"images":["https://cdn.givind.org/static/images/update/a0b5280e-5ca6-4bd5-be85-2628e3838061.jpeg"]}
23 March, 2021
Visually Impaired girls utilizing pandemic situation for personality development
Mitra Jyothi hosted 13 young visually impaired women during the last six months and they were facilitated with Personality Development and Communication Classes. These young stalwarts made best use of their pandemic academic break to undergo these classes. Our trainees belong to different parts of the state since we accommodated only students from Karnataka during the last 6 months due to Covid – 19 restrictions. They hail from Belgaum, Tummkur, Bangalore, Chikmagalur, Vijayapura, Kalaburagi and Mandya and it feels good to see the blending of the culture while they are at Mitra Jyothi.
Personality Development and Communication classes enable these young visually Impaired women to be more confident and communicate effectively. These classes boost the self-esteem and develop the leadership skills.
Inmates were very happy and motivated when they witnessed the true motivation from one of our trustee member Dr Ramana Polavarpu. on November 21, 2020. Dr Ramana is a Visually Impaired and obtained his Ph.D in Economics from the University of California at Davis.
Dream always big but don’t forget to plan out the execution and if you are disciplined then success is yours were the words of Ms Meghana K T who bagged the 465th rank in the Civil Services Exam of Union Public Service Commission (UPSC). She narrated her life and her experiences as a beneficiary of Mitra Jyothi.
It was very good feeling when our girls joined in providing awareness to the Mangalore college students on White Cane Day and International day of Persons with Disability through reading and singing songs on Disability. Mr Danish Mahajan – Founder Radio Udaan was the keynote speaker and he motivated the girls to accept the disability and definitely with the hard work one could achieve the dreams.
Amidst the Pandemic these inspiring girls participated in the numerous completions held at Mitra Jyothi. They got the opportunity to compete with the undergraduate students from St Aloysius College (Autonomous) Mangaluru through online platform during the disability awareness month 2020. Competitions included events like Debate, Pick & Speak, Memory Game and Antakshari. These completions were held on every Thursday of November 2020. The prizes were distributed on the International day of Persons with Disability and prizes comprised of Pen Drives, Books and Smart Canes.
We are sure with the support of well wishers and the experience they gain at Mitra Jyothi hostel will help them to achieve their goals and succeed in life.