Destitute women in India are left homeless. The same goes for former prisoners or poor women. The conditions they have to suffer are unimaginable. Institutions like Janodaya are providing a lifeline to Indian women.
India’s female prisoner population has risen by 61% over the last decade. That’s a disturbing trend that the government needs to do something about it. Infrastructure hasn’t kept up the pace of this growth. The prisons are overcrowded, unhygienic and have no facilities for the inmates. The institutes have not been following any guidelines issued by the Government. Prisoners go through a living hell and things don’t seem to improve after they are released.
Where does a female prisoner go? Have you ever thought about where do ex-convicts go? They need jobs, a place to stay, medical facilities and assistance. For that matter, destitute, widowed and poor women are sailing on the same boat. They have nobody to turn to and no education or work experience to rely on. Most of them are too old to even work. The government and our society have a long history of ignoring women. They are not given their due in any state. A system has to be created to give them a safe haven. Janodaya is striving to create them.
Women can be economically empowered by Janodaya. They have regular workshops to discuss vital matters. Poor women living in slums, destitute women and former female prisoners are all supported through Janodaya. While they can’t provide shelter, they have self-help groups and meetings to ensure the welfare of their members. For 30 years, it has been working for the welfare and benefit of women. It’s not just women though, even children are supported by this NGO. Children from the streets or belonging to the backward communities and lower strata of society can need a helping hand. Instead of just throwing money, they focus on solving the problem from the root. If these children are educated and offered employment, they can look after themselves and become breadwinners. An educated family is a responsible family. Illiteracy is also the cause of several other vices such as gambling, addiction, abuse, and violence. Handing these children the correct tools can alter their lives dramatically. Children of female prisoners are also included in this group. The help offered by them is dynamic. Destitute women, former prisoners, street dwellers, and poor women require social, economic, legal and personal help. They have well-thought plans and programs to assist the women in need. What may work for a young or middle-aged woman may not necessarily work for an old and destitute woman.
Based in Bangalore, Janodaya has helplines that you can call any time of the day. The helpline will answer all your queries and give assistance should you need it. From 2002, it has a legal cell that will intervene in domestic matters. Victims may not want legal aid always so they make the parties sit together and solve things through discussion. It is free of cost. The Government of Karnataka has also supported this scheme and has placed them in 3 locations in Bangalore. A working women’s hostel was also built so that urban and rural women could have a place to stay. In 2004, Janodaya began offering women finance and loans to start their own business. Small livelihood enterprises and income generating businesses are preferred that support woman and empower them. Children of former female prisoners can also approach Janodaya for scholarships. They have a built a strong network through prisons and reform homes. To ensure no child falls into the traps of child labor or sexual slavery, the NGO provides training, residence, employment and education to them.
The work done by Janodaya has benefited multiple families in India from 3 decades.
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