Updates of all activities of Saheli Trust, Dehra Dun, India
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Dear everyone,

February was a unique month for us, we faced some challenges, we overcame some but were stuck with one, for which we need your help. Do read below and give your suggestions on how best to overcome a very interesting but difficult situation, which is there in the very first post. Thank you :-)
These are women beggars living in a shanty near Dehradun, called Sapera Basti. We have been visiting the area every month for over a year now, our initial focus was on reducing  the domestic violence, which we did manage to reduce substantially. 

Our next step is  to provide an alternative source of income to these women so that they stop begging. As a beggar, these women earn upto INR 400 per day, which is a tidy sum. All our suggestions, from selling flowers to gas filled balloons at crossings, failed to cut any ice. Since as a beggar, they are independent and not answerable to anyone with absolutely flexible working days and working hours, they are very reluctant to take up any formal work. All our pleas of earning an "honourable" living, fell on deaf ears.

Any suggestions on how to get these women off begging?
Saheli children performing in St Jude's School, Dehradun
On 26th Jan, to celebrate India's Republic Day, our children, did us proud, by flawlessly performing in front of thousands of students of one of Dehradun's most reputed school, St Jude's.

Prakash ( the boy in the right picture) danced with confidence and ease, Neha moved everyone to tears by her song and Ganga, a student of a government school, flawlessly gave a speech on the importance of the  day.

It was a good exposure to our children and instilled a great sense of self confidence in them.
After a 4 hour operation in PGI, Chandigarh, Prakash returned, cheerful as usual, on the 21st of February. Unfortunately, the operation did not go as planned and the surgeons could not remove the constricted part of Prakash's trachea, as it was too near the vocal cords and if removed maybe he would never have been able to speak again. So  they performed a different surgery and Prakash came back still with a tube in his throat. he will go back after 3 months for a review.
Gender Sensitization Meeting with slum women
A meeting with women staying in a slum called "Veer Jabbar Basti" was an eye opening affair. The talk on gender sensitization was very well received by the women but some of their attitudes were eye opening. While some were proud of being a mother of 4 daughters, a few were upset about not having a son "to carry forward the family name". This was our first meeting in the slum and we intend to repeatedly visit the area till we register an attitudinal change.
Just to request everyone, that if you need any corporate gifts, personal gifts, or have a wedding in your family and looking for "shagun" envelopes or any other kind of personalized card / greeting card or just about anything, please do let us know. 

Women in our Saheli Self Help Group are very talented and we will give you the best and the cheapest product available in the market. Please just ask us once before deciding to look anywhere else. Thank you.
Message from the Secretary
Greetings from Saheli,

As you can see, February was a hectic month for us. The most important thing that happened was the surgery of Prakash. I wish to thank each and everyone who helped us out meeting the expenses by donating. Without your help, none of this would have ever been possible. Hopefully with your help and blessings, one day Prakash will be able to lead a normal life.

A humble request I would like to make everyone is to help us with funds. We are a bit short of funds these days and since we spend around INR 45,000/- every month, I would appeal to all of you to please help out. Any little amount is welcome because each rupee counts. If you'd like to donate, please call or message me or simply reply to this email. Details of ways to donate are here:


Please remember, each rupee counts and please don't think that there are many "others" who will help us. Do help us yourself too. We now have 80G, so you get tax benefit too.

And finally, a big request to everyone is to please help us grow by giving us advice on the way forwards, by pointing out our mistakes and by suggesting new ideas to us. Please do not hesitate in criticizing anything you don't like. And if you live in Dehradun, or if you ever visit our city, my earnest appeal to you is to visit us. Do call me and I shall be honored to arrange a visit for you. My number is +91-9760371958.

With regards,

Shruti Kaushik,
Secretary, Saheli

...and in the end...
If you missed the back issues of our newsletter, please follow these links:
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014

April & May 2014
March 2014
February 2014
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