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

Greetings from Saheli.

September has been a quiet month for us, with the focus being on teaching girls in the villages. Do read on to know what we have been upto this month.
Responding to distress calls
On 18th we got a distress call from a woman named Chandini, living in a slum cluster on the outskirts of Dehradun. She was being beaten, black and blue, by her husband and we could hear the shouts and abuses even as she spoke. Our team lead by Shruti Kaushik, our Secretary, rushed to the spot and reached their house in 15 minutes.

The husband was drunk, reeking of alcohol and with great difficulty made to sit down. Shruti gave him severe tongue lashing and after half an hour of talking, he relented and promised never to lift his hand again. Till today, even as I write this, Chandini has not been beaten again. Though he does trouble her, but there is no verbal or physical violence.
And she survived twice being thrown off the roof....
Another distressing distress call we received towards the end of the month, was that from a village 40 kms away from Dehradun, from a girl named Tarannum. This 28 year old, married recently to an alcoholic, survived twice being thrown off the roof of her own home, with just a broken ankle.

Her husband living in the same village was a threat to the family as well. The local police had been unhelpful and been a mute spectator to her trauma.

We reported the matter to very senior police officials and forwarded her application for protection to them, lets hope the husband stops bothering them now. We will be moving the courts on her behalf for divorce.
Education @ Your Doorstep

Our efforts to teach village girls, who are denied education beyond middle school by their parents, under the Education@YourDoorstep campaign, was in full swing in September. Three classes were running, two hours a day each, with 34 students. Since all of them are Muslim girls, the classes were closed for a week for the festival of Eid.

Mid term exams provide us an opportunity to access the work of the teachers. There are 5 teachers involved in the project, with focus being not just teaching them English and Computers, but opening up their minds, making them self confident and also trying to talk to the parents to delay their marriages till an appropriate age and sensitizing them on gender issues as well.

The picture below is that of a batch which finished in September from Ghisadpaddi village.

Exam time in an E@YD center.
This month's Outreach meet was held in Mecca Masjid area outside Dehradun on gender discrimination and women's rights. The elder women were surprisingly candid about their not being able to financially support their families as they were uneducated. Hopefully, their children now will not land up in the same situation.
Message from the Secretary
Dear Everyone,

October has been quite a hectic month for us, with our E@YD program in full throttle. It is very heartening to see girls, who had never seen a computer before, writing complex formulas in an Excel sheet. Over the last 6 months we have undertaking the program, we have seen that most of the girls are really interested in computers, English evokes comparatively less enthusiasm in most.

In the Saheli Shelter, one of our girls got placed in Amul Dairy as an Assistant Human Resource person in Jaipur. She had done her MBA and has now gone to Jaipur. It was a sad day for all of us but this is part of life, one has to move on. The younger children were busy with class tests and all of them scored well. Pushpa, one of the girls living with us, who is a National Judo champion, got selected to represent Uttarakhand State this year again in the Nationals as well. She is just 16 years of age and has the potential of reaching the international arena

Finally, as I always say, we would love to have your feedback, both negative and positive, because that is what helps us grow. Please do not hesitate to comment, all you need to do is to reply to this email. Your words mean a lot to us, so please don't hesitate.

And the invitation to visit our shelter is there for everyone. Please do spare some time and come and feel the spirit of Saheli.

With regards,

Shruti Kaushik,
Secretary, Saheli

...and in the end...
Read our Annual Report for the year 2016
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