AAO SAATH MAA ( Come along Mothers)

To empower mother with education and IT skills to be change maker in children`s education & financially independent

Photo of Summaiya Afreen
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Eligibility

  • Yes, I fulfill all of the eligibility criteria.

Initiative's representative name

Summaiya Afreen

Initiative's representative date of birth

21 December 1988

Initiative’s representative gender

  • Woman

Which eligible market are you based in?

  • India

Where are you making a difference?

Delhi , Karol Bagh

Website or social media url(s)

www.meralakshya.org www.facebook.com/lakshyajj Instagram : lakshyajeevanjagriti Twiiter : @lakshya_jj

When was your organisation founded?

December 2009

Focus areas

  • Helping people adapt to technologies of the future
  • Financial skills and capability
  • Reskilling and upskilling the workforce

Project Stage

  • Growth (have moved past the very first activities; working towards the next level of expansion)

Yearly Budget: How much capital do you need to accomplish your proposed project?

  • $10k - $50k

Organisation Type

  • Non-profit / NGO

1. Founding story: Share a story about the "Aha!" moment that led the founder(s) to get started or the story of how you saw the potential for this to succeed

Rahul`s motivation came from his past experiences. He & his mother were the victim of domestic violence, his childhood was ruined & was thrown out of his house when he raised his voice. Over time this made him think more on the lines educating and empowering others. Summaiya was born and brought up in a conservative society where education, career and dreams have no importance. She was not happy with the current situation of girls in her own family, neighbourhood as the only concern for girls was to get married. She started teaching few girls. When Rahul met Summaiya in college where he was a guest faculty they both worked on a research based on single mother which won them $400 at IIM-A. They decided to work on mission& launched Lakshya

2. The problem: What problem surrounding employability or financial capability are you helping to solve?

Indian workforce ratio is 68% males &32% females. Women in lower class families are illiterate & have little say in determining their life. They have low self-esteem, little access to IT. They are unable to help their children in education, face domestic violence & have lesser contribution in GDP . Developed by age old society norms, to be a homemaker, she is trained with some specific dialogues, I am not meant for it, I cannot do it

3. Your Solution: How are you planning to solve this problem? Share your specific approach.

We can teach them, give them employment etc. but only when they are ready to take those opportunities. Our approach is not direct. We reach out to them through home visits and with our mobilization team to talk to them and invite them at our center. Initially, we enroll them in various dialogs base workshops so that they can share their fear, challenges and give them platforms to talk. We remove their fears and the taboo of starting the education at this stage of life then only our trainers and counsellor and existing mother students inspire them to join our program consist of Basic Education, English Language, Financial education, Basic IT and Graphic Designing skills. Our motive is to bring a shift in their mindset and inspire them to take charge of their lives. Connecting them with Information and technology to mainstream them and connect them with World Wide Web.

4. How are you innovating or using unique approaches to solving the problem?

Premlata a widow was approached by our mobilising team. Since she was uneducated and had two children,she was left with no choice but to be a domestic worker. At first, when she listened to it she laughed “Is it possible?!! This is not the age “. But when our mobilising team shared experiences of other mothers trained in a similar program and shared what future she can build after this training, she joined the program. She enrolled herself in a leadership workshop where during the reflection exercise she realised the inner strength and enrolled herself in language and computer literacy program. Premlata was part of various other workshops like financial literacy and vision board. Today she is working in the ministry of women&child welfare

5. Employability: how is your organization or project teaching people to develop the skills that they need to survive in the future job market?

Our context is to create leadership among women to play an active role in enhancing the GDP of the country by upbringing an empathetic and resilient workforce as well as become a support system for their families to come out of the vicious cycle of poverty. Through our I CAN workshops we clear their internal dialogues about themselves and make them available for learning skills, after that they get enrolled into various skill based training like financial literacy, language training, IT skills to be a data operator or web designer, tele-calling and marketing/ counselling skills. Once trained they have opportunity and choice to get jobs( where we train them in interview skills) , to open small scale business, get involved powerfully in their children education and financial management of family

5a. Please describe which future-oriented skills your organization is focused on fostering and how you have measured / plan to measure progress

Measurement of progress is done by tracking Number of beneficiaries enrolled in the program Number of women completed the program Number of trainers trained Number of jobs acquired; any micro businesses started etc. Level of communication, IT skills and Financial Skills pre and post program Increment in family income Monthly figures for all the skills training are compiled and analysed on a monthly, quarterly and annual basis to monitor the number of units, the number of beneficiaries trained the break-up of the enrolled candidates across age-group and gender

6. Financial capability: how is your organization or project creating innovative solutions that arm people with ability to optimize their current and future financial health

Our program offers a full fledged development of our participants where giving them basic financial literacy is one the important aspect. Our partner NIIT foundation along with Vodafone we offer financial literacy program to the women and some of the outcome of the program is opening of the bank accounts of our beneficiaries, getting to know saving plans, government schemes etc. Also to make person financially independent we connect with different job options where they can earn decent money.

6a. Please describe what aspect of financial capability your organization is focused on fostering and how you have measured / plan to measure progress.

As of now our Eklavya program which is a after school support center supports our operational expenses and from which we subsidise our women for Aao sath ma. In other words our focus on dual-generation strategies, we offer a paid program for children where they pay full tuition fee $15/student and make a revenue of $20,000 annually. For women’s program, we charge a nominal fee of $5/month and in a batch of 30 women, in every batch, there are 10 women (domestic workers, daily wage earners, etc).

7. Marketplace: Who else is addressing the same problem? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

Empowering women is the key leverage point needed to transform the cycle of poverty, by transforming their beliefs from I can't to can. Various NGOs are working to achieve different results but if a woman has suffered a lifetime of oppression she can feel worthless so she doesn't take advantage of these resources she believes she can't and she won't. A woman who believes she can't lead the education of children and doesn't learn how to so in spite of the inspiring work of , they're not able to completely empower women.We are working to change the belief system to be financially independent

8. Impact: How has your project made a difference so far?

Till date we have trained 6000 women in the age group 20 to 35 years. 28% of women report earning at least $1.50 per day, compared to 4% at enrolment, 81% report saving household earnings, compared to 10% at enrolment. 65% report practising family planning, to 32% at enrolment, 95% report knowledge of hygiene, 23% at enrolment. 24% had no numeracy and language skills at enrolment; 4% were aware of computer:40% improvement in communication skills,36% in computer skills,34% improvement in numeracy skills. 96% report knowing their rights, to 15% at enrolment,39% of them report having taken action on violence against women 37% report running for a leadership role to 6% at enrolment,71% report participating in children’s education

9. Financial Sustainability Plan. Can you tell us about you plan to fund your project and how that plan will be sustainable in the short, medium, and long term?

Since our children's program takes cares of the women empowerment program, we are planning to work towards promoting entrepreneurship among women for the future sustainability. Would like to set up a sewing centre to produce sustainable cloth bags which will be an alternative to the plastic bags through up-cycling the present fabric waste int he fashion industry. We are looking for collaboration with other foundations and government grant opportunities

10. Team

Currently we are team of 12 full time and 20 volunteer and 4 board members. Roles are distributed from administration ( Management, Accounts, Strategy) to front line operations like trainers, mass mobilisers, counsellors, tele- callers. Over time we want to expand pan India and create more self help groups with the support of other organisations and volunteers. We are also planning to launch fellowship which shall create leaders in the mission.

If you selected “yes” to any of the categories above, please explain how being a member of this group has impacted you and your work?

N/A

How did you hear about this challenge?

  • Social media

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