Excerpts from the June 2022 Newsletter
Our June newsletter features fantastic photos from one of the many events Wendy attended during her time in India. We are excited to share projects like these that work towards achieving sustainability!
Divineya Society focuses primarily on projects related to women’s rights, gender equality, and economic autonomy. We are also keenly aware of other disadvantages faced by our communities. For example, in India, healthy sanitation practices and proper waste disposal are an ongoing challenge.
Talented Community Role Model
For those committed to international development, community allies who understand the local culture and social framework are essential to success. We would not be able to operate effectively if it weren’t for our partner, Meera Arya.
Meera is passionate about creating social change. In her free time, she operates Sakhi Kunj, the nonprofit organization she created which supports women in her community.
Meera’s full-time job involves providing education about waste, sanitation, and health safety to community members. The company for which she works, Swayam Swachatta Initiative Limited, is under contract with the South Delhi government to handle waste appropriately and act as educators, facilitating communication with the public around these key issues.
Meera’s latest project with Swayam Swachatta has focused on teaching the local community about single-use plastic reduction and waste segregation. To achieve this goal, she coordinates several related programs. While Wendy was working with Meera in Delhi this winter, Meera invited her to participate in one such event.
Fun and Education Go Hand-in-Hand
The waste reduction event took place in the slums of South Delhi. Meera had hired a theatre troupe to combine her educational material with audience-friendly entertainment. As our friends in India have often remarked,
Indians love noise, music, and dancing!
After receiving the necessary tools and background information, the troupe of about 25 began marching through the streets, where they drummed, chanted, and sang until a large group of curious onlookers began to follow. The actors led the locals to an open field, where they encouraged everyone to form a circle. Then, with as much bombast and energy as possible, they acted out tasks such as sorting recycling, compost and garbage, all while encouraging the audience to participate.
The performance concluded with a question and answer session in which Meera answered any and all questions from the participants. The event proved a fun and creative way to get the locals excited and energised about waste reduction, and provided strong positive memories to associate with such practices.
And global development goals aside… it was a really good time!
Expanding Future Goals
Witnessing the success of Meera’s ingenuity, like this theatre program, inspired us to help her expand the outreach of her educational programming. Through our partnership, we are aiming to secure steady funding for Divineya and Sakhi Kunj so that they can deliver similar projects in rural areas and communities, which typically receive less government funding and support than their urban counterparts.
With the generous support of our international community and the efforts of our women on the ground in India, we are witnessing the success of several important projects, such as; an increase in women’s employment, health and wellness education, vocational training and new product production.
As we strengthen our bonds with our sisters in India and find support and solidarity within our local communities, the implementation of skills, initiatives and actions continue to unfold and foster a fair, healthy and vibrant future for all.