Women and Child Development: Making World a Better Place

Introduction

Women and child development has become the buzzword today with women working alongside men in all spheres and children are expected to get influence by their environment at different age level.  Women development can be defined as a process leading to enhancing women’s control over financial, human and intellectual resources. In any nation, women development can be assessed by their involvement in social, economic and social fields. Similarly, child’s development is the process of growth of child from dependency to increase independency. It is important that parents take every step necessary to ensure that their children grow up in environment where their social, emotional and educational needs are met.

volunteer programs in india - Lakshyam

Issue

As is a widely known fact, the condition of women in India as well as the rest of the world personifies pitiful. We have a high rate of female feticide and at the same time the discrimination against girls in India has been going on since ages now. Even today, there are several sections of the Indian society where the girl child is treated as a burden. Leaving behind the educational and medical front, girls in India lag far behind in receiving affection as well. Also, being the second most populated country, India has a large number of youths crowning its resources. However, this resource is misused one as well.

There are various problems faced by women and children together – Undernourishment which means lack of sufficient calories in food leading to weakness, lower work efficiency etc., Malnutrition which means lack of sufficient ingredients such as vitamins, proteins etc. in the food leading to illness, less weight of child at birth, high rate of child mortality etc., Limited Education as the number of school going children is still far from satisfactory.

Development Programs by Government and NGO

For the social and economic development of women and children, Government and certain NGOs have launched various schemes and programs such as:

Support To Training-Cum-Employment Programme (STEP):

  • The women are given training in sectors like agriculture, dairying, village and small industries.

Swa-Shakti Project:

  • Swa-Shakti aims at increasing women’s access to resources for better quality of life by providing health and education services and imparting skills to women for income generating activities.

National Commission for Women:

  • National Commission for Women protects constitutional and legal rights of women, recommends remedial measures, facilitates redressal of grievances and advises the Government on all matters affecting the welfare and development of women.

Rooh-Women Welfare Program:

  • This is one of the programs initiated by LAKSHYAM NGO in New Delhi. Lakshyam’s program, ‘Rooh-Awakening Women Soul’, meaning the spirit, aims at strengthening women demeanor towards life itself. The program’s first step is to provide remedial education to children; second step is to provide an essential degree of exposure along with professional training and third is to equip the girls with popular platform to sell their skills. This program also targets developments in ways of financial issues by organizing various workshops that enable poor women to self- generate employment.  Health awareness campaigns are organized every now and then. This program is well known for the child and women development in India.

Butterfly – Child Welfare Program:

  • Lakshyam NGO launched a similar program for children welfare named “Butterfly – Child Welfare and Education” that symbolizes freedom with wings of butterfly. This programs aims at imparting holistic education and well-round development and abolishing the term “underprivileged”. Students at Lakshyam are taught Hindi, Mathematics, English and Computer Sciences. It provides free of cost tutorials as well.

Conclusion

Efforts of Government and certain NGOs have enabled thousand of women to support their families. It has liberated women in the matter of social rights, respect and well-deserved affection. Also, at the same time the efforts have empowered innumerable children around the country. The quality of life of children is improving.

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Why You Should Do a Volunteer Program in India

India’s social divisions are one of the most extreme in the entire world, thus opening many opportunities for volunteer programs in India. From the party village and mansions of Hauz Khas in Delhi, to the infamous and incredible Bollywood culture in Mumbai, the rich in India live a life better than that to that in the western world. Meanwhile on the other hand, the poor in India live in one of the most squalid ad destitute conditions known to man, making the level of poverty in India the highest in the entire world. This is why volunteer programs in India are so special, fulfilling and rewarding. You can simply never stop giving.

Volunteer program in India
This blog outlines the reasons to volunteer in India, and what your expected outcome from a volunteer program in India should be.

The Indian people will break a great many stereotypes. Well, that was definitely the case for me at least. For somebody like me who was born and raised in England, I held a great many stereotypes about India regarding crime, transportation and the civility of the Indian people. But to be honest, although poverty is rife here in India, crime is relatively rare if you are careful of your belongings. The metro here in Delhi is actually better than the underground and overground in London! With fully air-conditioned cars, smooth rides and very efficient service, I was quite surprised to say the least. Finally, the Indians are surprisingly civilised and try to give a good image of India to foreigners such as myself. For somebody who is British, the Indian’s are pretty incredible at queuing up and waiting in line!

India is simply incredible. I could go on and on about what there is to do here in India. But simply for the sake of keeping this article short and sweet, if you are an adventurer and a shopper you will have the time of your life here in India.

Whatever you study or work as, you will learn a great deal from a volunteer program in India.

Volunteering for a country with such rife poverty will truly test your will. You must be open minded and ready to adapt and learn the language. You will carry out many activities to aid your cause, but you will definitely do one of the following if you do a volunteer program in India, and that is either teach or fundraise. From these you will learn how to design and market your own ideas and your fundraising campaign, you will develop IT skills, logistics and communication skills. Teaching is a powerful tool to cement your own knowledge of a subject and is valued by employers as excellent self-development experience.

My own personal experience in a volunteer program in India has been great. Working with LAKSHYAM really made me utilize my innovative skills to help me become an active contributor towards improving the quality of life of the disadvantaged in India.

Why Lakshyam is the best Volunteer Organization in India?

There are so many amazing NGOs that are doing some phenomenal work in India, these NGOs work hard in the field to bring about change in a hands-on approach. Different NGO’s work in different ways for their own causes to achieve one common goal, making this society a better place to live in. Few NGOs work for the education and rights of underprivileged children residing in slums, orphanages and shelter homes. Some NGOs work to eliminate hunger & malnutrition. Some NGOs work to improve the conditions of senior citizens in India. Some NGOs work for improving the conditions of animals. Some NGOs work altogether for the betterment of environment and plants.

Volunteering -Programs -in -India

I had recently volunteered at a NGO, LAKSHYAM. Since its inception in 2004, LAKSHYAM has established itself for the welfare of the society, and mankind at large along with the best Volunteer Organization in India. Engaged in a number of social welfare activities like child welfare, health, education and women empowerment, Lakshyam has rigorously aimed at implementing effective and innovative solutions to improve quality of life of the not-so-privileged communities. Lakshyam’s ‘Butterfly Program’ provides Remedial Education Centers for students, in order to fill the gap in the government education system. Lakshyam ‘Toy Library’ aims at delivering toys and books from the privileged kids to the not-so-privileged ones. Till now, over 2,00,000 toys and books have been distributed across India. Lakshyam’s ‘Rooh Program’ tirelessly strives to educate the women of India and empower them with the confidence to lead a healthy lifestyle.

Following are the various objectives Lakshyam aims at:

  • To help rural women learn easily employable skills
  • To grant a financially independent status to rural women
  • To help women protect themselves from domestic violence
  • To help women attain the independent stance and say in the household by means of financial independence
  • To give children a conducive and progressive environment for their development without any short comings
  • To provide free-of-cost remedial education to children and give a fair access to education to all
  • To help children choose the right career path and ensure the availability of fair opportunities to all
  • To see rural India grow with its ethnicity and pristine beauty
  • To create a cycle of giving back. Where talent, in stead of flowing towards urban cities, gives back to its home
  • To save drowning neighborhoods from the plight of poverty
  • Promote education and fill in the gaps created by money
  • To attract well-educated teachers and provide standard education to children dwelling in rural areas

I had volunteered at Lakshyam’s Ghaziabad centre. The centre has children with age group ranging from 4 to 12. All these children belong to not so financially developed families. Also these children lacked primary education. But here at Lakshyam, these children are provided with all the necessities comprising of lots of stationery, books, clothes and uniforms. I had an amazing experience spending time with students. Teaching them various subjects like English, Mathematics, Environmental Studies, Computers and Hindi was completely a unique experience for me. The children were very sweet and cooperative. And they had the zeal to learn new and interesting things. And I was amazed to see how some girls had remarkable dancing skills.

Overall I feel blessed to have worked with LAKSHYAM. It is always good to do something for the well being of our nation. I hope to stay in touch with this organization and do my bit whenever required.

Woman creates life…..but still without RIGHTS?

As we know, India is a popular country well known for it’s culture, heritage, etiquettes, history, landmarks, traditions, religion and many more. But yes, it is also famous for one more thing i.e. male chauvinistic nation, where women are always considered inferior to men in various aspects of life. According to Jawaharlal Nehru, ‘the condition of a nation well is reflected by looking at the status of its women. The country, in which higher attention has been paid towards women and Child care, becomes more developed than others’.

Orthodox View

India is a country where women have been worshipped as goddesses since ages. However, when it comes to giving them equal rights and freedom the same people neglect its importance and that’s because we live in a patriarchal society where people believe that the sole purpose of women is to take care of her Family and kids. One might think that such things only happen in villages where people are not educated enough to understand the concept of gender equality, but that’s not the case. Even in big metropolitan cities where people are educated enough to understand the difference between right and wrong, some people still have the belief that women are below men and deny to considered them equal.

Crucial changes required

One of the most famous saying by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, “To awaken the people, it is the women who must be awakened. Once she is on the move, the family moves, the village moves, the nation moves”. So, from the above statement it is quiet easy to understand that if the women of your nation is developed, then the development of your nation is a must. So to achieve this thing, we need to destroy the demons killing the rights of women and ethics and values from the society such as honour killing, illiteracy, dowry, rape, female infanticide, inequality, domestic violence, sexual harassment, illegal trafficking, prostitution and many other issues. Discrimination on the basis of gender is something which will bring cultural, social, economic and educational differences in the society, that will push back the growth of the nation.

Strategies and Initiatives by Government

In the past few years, the government has launched many schemes for women aimed at their upliftment. Here are some of them:

  1. Beti Bachao Beti Padhao Yojna: It was launched on January 22 in the year 2015 from
    Panipat, Haryana on the occasion of International Day of the Girl Child to generate awareness and also improve the efficiency of welfare services meant for girl child. This scheme is to prevent gender-biased sex-selective elimination and ensure the education, survival, and protection of the girl child. It also aims to celebrate the girl child.
  2. Rajiv Gandhi National Creche Scheme: Launched in 2012, this scheme was revamped in 2016 in which assistance is provided to NGO’s for running creches. This scheme supports those women who go outside of their homes to work. A nursery is provided to the babies and young children of working women where they are taken care off during the daytime. So, the women who don’t have relatives to rely on can procure benefits under this scheme.
  3. Mahila E-Haat: Launched on March 7, 2016, by the Ministry of Women and Child Development, the Mahila E-Haat is an initiative for meeting needs of women entrepreneurs. It provides a unique and direct marketing platform and also leverages technology for supporting women entrepreneurs, SHGs, and NGOs.
  1. Working Women Hostel: This scheme envisages provision of safe and affordable hostel accommodation to women who are working, single, and living away from homes. It carries salient features and possesses the objective of providing safe and convenient accommodation for working women with daycare facility for their children wherever possible in urban, semi-urban or even rural areas at a locality where employment opportunity for women exist. Since the inception of this scheme, around 890 hostels have been sanctioned and over 66,000 women have benefited.
  2. One Stop Centre Scheme:The aim of launching this scheme is to provide support and assistance to women who are affected by violence in public and private spaces. Through this scheme, the women who are facing physical, sexual, emotional, psychological and economic abuse, irrespective of age, class, caste, education status, marital status, race, and culture will be supported. One Stop Centre provides specialized services to women who face any kind of violence due to attempted sexual harassment, sexual assault, domestic violence, trafficking, honour-related crimes, acid attacks or witch-hunting. The OSCs are set up in each state to provide integrated medical, legal, and psychological support to women across the country.

In conclusion, the modern woman of today has a lot of potentials. From managing the household to serving in the armed forces, or managing business, women are excelling in every field. Thus, the Government of India and various NGOs are creating various strategies and initiatives for women and child development.

Best NGOs in Delhi for Volunteer Programs

Believe it or not, life is much more beautiful when you go beyond the pubs and luxuries that you seek; much more satisfying when you walk in among the tiny tots screeching their little stories which they confide in you heartily. Watch the boy flaunting his new vocabularies, the shy girl in the corner of the room smile when her homework is appreciated, or the twenty something year old woman, married off at the age of fourteen, take pride in her hand woven shawl. These few things are deemed as ‘priceless moments’. And you will discover a whole new side to yourself, one who longs and works his/her best to see a child take pride in its skills for the first time, or a seventy year old once again having faith that life can be meaningful. But you’re already enamored by these little drops of happiness and that is why you are here, aren’t you? Staying in Delhi, you have always known how poverty has swept into the nooks and corners of the city; and how for even once you have wanted to lend them a helping hand. So the university students searching for NGOs to quench their thirst of contributing to the society, the interview hoppers wanting to make their CV better and for someone with no ambition but wanting to kick start an experience, any experience; here’s a list of some of the best NGOs you can volunteer programs in India

1.Lakshyam: It obviously gets on your nerves when the same little kid tags you along the street asking for money and food. You have offered him once or twice but then he has set this gesture of yours as his daily routine. And how about the woman sitting by the roadside trying to sell off her shaggy vegetables with a kid playing aside? The woman won’t get back the childhood she has lost, but she can always work in ways which will empower her skills that she had put behind a long time back, and give her child a better hood.

Lakshyam has been campaigning since 2004. It aims to build a secure and clean world for the underprivileged; providing them with education, basic needs ranging from clothes and foods to beddings and toys, health care programs and many more. It targets the slum areas of many states across India and provide them with a stable, healthy environment. It has three major programs among many others, namely, Lakshyam: Toy Library, Lakshyam’s Butterfly Program and Lakshyam Rooh.

Lakshyam’s Toy Library aims at distributing toys and books to the underprivileged children donated by the ones who have it in abundance. Till now, Lakshyam has distributed over 2,00,000 toys and books across the country.

Lakshyam’s butterfly program provides remedial education centers for students, in order to fill the gap in the government education system.

Lakshyam’s Rooh program tirelessly strives to educate the women of India and empower them to have confidence in themselves and step up the stone of strength and success.

Volunteering Programs:

  • Media and communications
  • Administrative work and business development
  • Academics
  • Indoor and outdoor sports
  • Performing arts
  • Data management and research
  • Social entrepreneurship
  • Building and construction
  • Co-curricular activities

All in all, these are three of the best NGOs in Delhi, with several designations to volunteer as.  Among all the volunteering programs in India, these three NGOs provide some of the best opportunities. Nontheless, any NGO that you work for, all the volunteering programs in India, they will all please you with a satisfaction of working for yourself and others. So gear up and quench your thirst of contributing towards a better India. There are opportunities like these which will serve you pleasure and benefit the other.

2.Greenpeace India: Greenpeace India has been campaigning since 2001 on environmental and people centric issues. Climate change, saving forests, safe food and decentralized renewable energy are a few among the other key campaigns of Greenpeace India. It aims at making the world a place where energy is as clean as a mountain stream, where everyone has security, dignity and joy, where power is used to fight poverty and injustice, instead of people. Greenpeace uses nonviolent, creative action to pave the way towards a greener, more peaceful world and to confront the systems that threaten the environment.

Volunteering programs:

  • Content/Blog Writers, Video making
  • Door to door campaign
  • Online volunteering (social media)
  • Online door-to-door (sign a petition)
  • Start a campaign; hold a public meeting

3. Unnati: Unnati aims to provide vocational training to the underprivileged youth. It was established in the year 2003.  It has trained and employed thousands of youths across India and has lived up to its expectation of 100% employment in every batch. It strategies, collaborative research, public education, advocacy, direct field level mobilization and implementation with multiple stakeholders are the key instruments of our work. The interventions span from the grassroots level to the policy level environment in ensuring the basic rights of citizens. Presently, all the activities are organized around the following program centers:

  • Social inclusion and empowerment
  • Civic leadership, governance and social accountability
  • Social determinants of disaster risk reduction

Volunteering programs:

  • Teach Values, Honesty, Punctuality, Justice, etc.
  • Teach English
  • Teach about retail industry
  • Teach life skills

Being a part of someone else’s victory is one of the most humbling and purified experiences in a world of constant cynicism and self doubt, now that’s what volunteering at an NGO will bring to you – peace and humility.

What should we do for Woman and Child Development?

Sheryl Sandberg once famously wrote in her book Lean In (New York Times Bestseller 2013), “In the future, there will be no female leaders. There will only be leaders.”

She went on to establish the Lean In foundation, an organisation that works to help women all over the world advance in their careers.

Being a highly educated woman herself, Sandberg knew the relevance of proper guidance and opportunities for women. She has dedicated much of her time and energy towards creating awareness of the wage gap and lack of women in leadership positions.

Another famous organisation – the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation published No Ceilings: The Full Participation Project that makes data regarding participation of women in the workforce available to governments and research analysts.

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Thus all over the world, people are rising to the advent of third (and fourth) wave feminism and are encouraging women to participate in activities previously kept out of their reach.

Closer to home, Lakshyam is an NGO in Delhi that works for women empowerment and is highly regarded for the same. With an executive and advisory board consisting of Delhi’s finest professionals, Lakshyam has achieved many social welfare goals.

Lakshyam’s two main initiatives are Rooh and Butterfly, targeted towards women and children respectively.

Rooh aims to equip women with skills that will enable them to lead a life of dignity and meaning. Volunteers help these women recycle products, create artisanal items and sell the same to encourage a skill-based earning.

Butterfly aims to educate children to bridge the gap between children in slums and children in schools by bringing the disadvantaged children to the same educational level as that of a child enrolled in school. Volunteers or interns come in to teach the children English, Hindi and/or Mathematics, and assist these children with new concepts and homework.

Lakshyam provides a conducive environment for both volunteers and the women or children they teach. By helping the volunteers to impart their knowledge to their students in an effective manner, Lakshyam has seen tremendous results since its inception in 2004. We are working on the women and child development in India, And our volunteer working in an awesome way.

Child development is incredibly important for India at this point in time – with over 41% of India’s population under the age of 20, India is one of the youngest countries in the world. It thus proves to be a tremendous challenge to equip each child with the skills and education they need.

India has made commendable progress for the same, whether it was introducing Activity-Based Learning in Tamil Nadu or the Marks for Sports campaign.

Lakshyam takes a leaf out of the great educators’ books and implements different pedagogy practices in its classrooms. By engaging the students with the help of visual and auditory aids, they are able to help children excel in the classroom.

Women and child development holds more meaning in our personal lives than we might think – all of us know women and children in our lives who have great potential to succeed but may sometimes lack the encouragement or resources they need to achieve their goals.

Lakshyam thus urges many of us to rethink our approach to women and child development. By making it their primary mission, they have proved just how much benefit can be derived by educating even one child or woman.

One can work with Lakshyam as a volunteer or an intern and help change lives. Donations also go a long way in assisting the organisation. Perhaps Sheryl Sandberg’s dream of equal female participation can come true sooner than we think.

The Best Women’s Organizations in India for Woman and Child Development

India has a population of 1.2 billion of which 48.5% is constituted by females. This means that almost half of India’s population is composed of female members. The government do have rights assigned separately for women in many regards such as citizenship, access to education, equal employment opportunities. But the reality is radically different.

Despite technically having constitutional rights which aims to safeguard the and empower women in the society, women in India face violence in injustice and are victims of rape, domestic violence, forced labor, marital rape, denial of educational and employment opportunities even in the 21 century. Being a girl in the male dominating society means struggling for what you should be entitled to get.

Lakshyam-Women and child development

India being the second largest populated country of the world having diverse cultural groups. It is difficult to generalize and separate population into various groups. However, empowering women is vital for the growth and development of the nation. A nation is only developed only when women of the nation is developed and nurtured well through education, employment and healthy living practices. Today, women need advocates and allies across the country that will fight for them for not only their safety and health but also to gain access to further educational opportunities and to build their confidence for empowerment and autonomy.

There are several NGO’s which are working exclusively for women rights to give them opportunities and justice. Some of the best women’s organizations are Safety, CREA, CARE, Swayam and Snehalaya.

One such NGO which is continuously working to lift the status of women in the society is LAKSHYAM.

Lakshyam has a specially designed program called ROOH-Awakening Womens’ Soul’, meaning the spirit is a strategically developed, three-tier project that aims at strengthening a woman’s status towards life itself. It starts from providing remedial education to children; second is to provide an essential degree of exposure along with professional training, and third is equipping girls with a popular platform to learn and sell their skill.

Besides this, the program also provides opportunities and a by organizing various workshops based on easily marketable skills that enable poor women to generate employment for themselves.

Health Related Workshops

A Breastfeeding Awareness Session is conducted for the community women almost every two months, according to the needs of a particular area. The community women learn about WHO and UNICEF recommendations for feeding an infant or a young child in a healthy manner.

Through these sessions and workshops Lakshyam bridges the gap between knowledge and personal well being.

Impact of Initiatives of Lakshyam

Lakshyam’s struggle and programs have so far got a positive change in the lives of the women and families. Thousands of women have been able to support their families. Awareness is been created among the women regarding health measures, policies, educational opportunities for them to live a better and a dignified life. Lakshyam has made a conscious effort to liberate women from social injustice in many parts of the country and Lakshyam devote time to grow woman and child development.

We have centers another center in Ghaziabad and Vasant Kunj areas in Delhi where Lakshyam has effectively made foreseeable changes in the community and is continuously making an effort to build a dignified living standard. We also have centers in Jharkhand where 120 women have received training in stitching and sewing in Nagri Village. And 80 women have received training in jewelry making and stitching in Mahilong Village District.

The aim of this ROOH Program of Lakshyam is to empower women of all age groups, by providing basic resources and enhancing their skills which will help them maintain a healthy lifestyle and lead a better living for them.