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Story behind....



Gender Self Learning process is devised as activity oriented Self Learning:

Reflection: As part Self Learning process a NHG or 2- 3 NHGs were asked to perform a theme based activity (activity for change). During this process, 4 members from Navyasree NHG, Harisree NHG and Dhanalekshmi NHG of Thrikkodithaanam CDS of Kottayam District started an activity based on topic social influence of mobility, after they identified an existing issue of difficulty to walk through a road near Pookkottuchira during evening needed to be addressed. While attending a class for Gender Support team members they had a chance to discuss about the social spaces that women can acquire. The decision of the four brave women was starting a food court (Thattukada) so that an unsafe place can be converted to a women and child friendly area and can find their own income which is a factor that affected their mobility.

There is a liquor shop at Pookkottuchira and because of the activities of alcoholics, women and children feared to use that road. Smt. Sheeja Chandran, Smt. Mini Mohan, Smt. Shailaja and Smt. Sreedevi Bhasi decided that the fast food shop will be functioning at evening starting at 5 pm (closing will be as per the requisite, sometimes at 1.30 am). Their efforts changed the area to woman and child friendly. Their venture was successful. They gained a profitable livelihood and women and children started using the road with safety feeling. Later their venture has been included in Kudumbashree’s Micro enterprise project by the CDS and now area is developing through different projects by tourism department.

Group member Smt. Sheeja Chandran says she can plan many things priorly as she is having an assured income. Smt. Mini Mohan shares the experience that “even Men approach their shop to get recipes of Tapioca Biriyani and other tasty dishes”. All of them shared their happiness as their initiation helped society by preventing anti social and abusive activities by the consumers of liquor shop.

These women can be taken as role model as they selected a place where no other activities are permitted because of the passive objection by departments and community due to the presence of liquor shop and alcoholics. This livelihood activity of NHG members improved the living environment and made the space women and child friendly. More tourism projects are also aftermath of this initiation by NHG members. Such activities could be duplicated and more such sort of collective interventions needed to create women- child friendly areas with Gender Equality.