Women turn entrepreneurs to transform lives in Mah villages

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 16 Jul 2018 09:23:16


By Sandip Kolhatkar,


CHINGUTAI Jadhav, in her mid-40s, has taken it upon herself to raise the health and nutritional standards of women in her small village in the drought-prone Osmanabad district of Maharashtra.
She wants to counsel people and persuade them to build toilets at their homes for better hygiene.
But Jadhav is not alone in her endeavour. She is among 20 such women entrepreneurs, who are working at the grass-root level help in transforming the lives of others while overcoming their own personal problems.

These women - from Osmanabad, Solapur, Latur and Washim districts -- have been selected by Swayam Shikshan Prayog (SSP), a Pune-based NGO, for the ‘Unnati Fellowship Award’.

With the fellowship programme, started from this year, the NGO intends to support these women by providing them financial support for a year in the form of a monthly stipend and an intensive mentoring by its team.
Jadhav, who hails from Medsinga village in Osmanabad, says her husband left her soon after their marriage.
“While living with my parents and brother, I decided to move on in life, become self-reliant and also encourage other women to lead a meaningful life by becoming financially independent,” she told PTI. For this, she joined a self-help group and started earning enough to support herself.

Jadhav says the NGO provided her support, and now her goal is to help women with issues pertaining to health, nutrition and sanitation.
“I would like to counsel and persuade at least 200 families to build toilets in their homes. The health issues of women are close to my heart,” she says.
Jadhav says women should go for regular health check-ups, including cancer screening.

Shilpa Vibhute, from Nanaj in Solapur district, wants to start a milk collection centre enlisting around 1,000 women.
“Using my experience while working with self-help groups and approaching banks for loans, I want to start a milk collection centre on a large-scale in and around our village with the help of 1,000 women. Through this venture, each woman can earn over Rs 12,000 per month,” she claims.
Born into a poor family, Vibhute, who has studied till class 12, is currently running three successful enterprises, including a nursery which sells grape saplings to local farmers.

“My strength is the trust of over 500 women who form a network in the region,” she says.
Archana Mane, from a small village called Ansurde in Osmanabad, says she has undergone training at the NGO in organic farming methods.