Devadasi Women Lead The Way In Their Village Development Work In Villages Of Karnataka
Goonj aims to build an equitable relationship of strength, sustenance and dignity between the cities and villages using the under-utilized urban material as a tool to trigger development with dignity, across the country.
Karnataka, 3 July 2022 11:21 AM GMT
Creatives : Ankita Singh
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The women received dignity kits including cloth pads, underwear, etc. while the community received carefully curated family Kits including essentials for a family’s needs, as a reward for their efforts.
Working with the people of Masti village in the Belgaum district of Karnataka, we found a new partner in the women of the Devadasi community of the area. According to the 2018 census report of the Karnataka State Women Development corporation Karnataka has 9733 devadasis. As our team mobilized and motivated the local community to solve their own problems, people decided to clean their local Pond Cleaning for better access to water as the village is located in an arid area, with scarce groundwater.
This is when 6 Devadasi women took the charge of gathering 94 other community members from their village to participate in this work. The village pond had been abandoned for many years and required extensive cleaning. It was surrounded by weeds the size of trees and dried-up dense bushes that had grown for distances all around it.
The team of 100 people worked tirelessly and enthusiastically to clean the contaminated water. Now that the water has been cleaned, it can be used for domestic purposes like washing and cleaning.
When we sat down with the village women in a Chuppi Todo Baithak ( Break the Silence meeting) to talk to them about their menstrual hygiene, the local Devadasi women also shared about their menstrual challenges. After the session, they vowed to pay more attention to their menstrual health and help with maintaining a cleaner environment in their village.
Most women at the session promised to share what they learned about menstrual health and hygiene with their daughters and introduce them to cloth pads.
The women received dignity kits including cloth pads, underwear, etc while the community received carefully curated family Kits including essentials for a family's needs, as a reward for their efforts.
In the past 2 years of Covid, Goonj has been working in a more focused way with some missed out communities amongst us like the devadasis, leprosy-affected people, disabled people, tribals, etc.
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