Stories of struggle

Bindu Shajan Perappadan
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A journey extraordinaire:To celebrate the achievements of ordinary women.
A journey extraordinaire:To celebrate the achievements of ordinary women.

Celebrating the achievements of ordinary women across the country doing extraordinary things and to raise funds for three non-governmental organisations working in the area of women empowerment, the Vodafone Foundation of India has unveiled Red Rickshaw Revolution in the Capital. The initiative will see three women — Laura Turkington and Carina Deegan from the Foundation along with the country’s first Indian female auto-rickshaw driver Sunita Chaudhary — cover a distance of 1,500 km from New Delhi to Mumbai in a red auto rickshaw in nine days, according to the organisers.

Departing from Delhi on March 9, these three women in their red rickshaw will travel thorough Haryana, Rajasthan, Gujarat and Maharashtra before arriving in Mumbai on March 18. The red rickshaw will pass through cities including Jaipur, Ajmer, Surat and Daman.

“Along the route we will discover and encounter ordinary women doing extraordinary things which will be streamed on to the dedicated website ,” explained Laura. Speaking about the website, Laura added, “The site went live on February 19 and has many special features and it has already showcased one extraordinary woman under the section ‘Today’s inspiration’.”

The website also features videos of five different ordinary women everyday speaking about why they feel proud about being a woman.

Once the journey begins on March 9, visitors to the website can watch and experience first hand, live interactions and meet with many of India’s unsung heroes, whose stories will be showcased on the website.

Speaking about the initiative and describing herself as being a confident, resourceful, strong resilient woman, Sunita says, “I am proud to be a woman as a woman brings life to this world. A woman is powerful, if she chooses to be. She has many facets to her personality – she can be a goddess and can be a destroyer.”

Meanwhile the Foundation has tied up with three non-government organisations — Breakthrough (which works in five states to build a culture of human rights and promote safety and security for women), Community Outreach Programme (operating and working with slum dwellers in Mumbai for poverty eradication) and Apne Aap Women’s Collective (working in one of the most underprivileged and isolated sections of Mumbai-Kamathipura, Asia’s largest and oldest red light area) — for this initiative.

A red rickshaw will make its way from Delhi to Mumbai recording the triumphant stories of ordinary women




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