In Bangalore, India, over 300 Young Women & Men Joined Together to Appreciate Women and Learn About Gender Equality

by Sailesh Singhal

On the occasion of International Women’s Day and 7 Days of Genius Week, Student Council of St. Joseph’s College, in collaboration with Step It Up for Gender Equality, World We Want and 92Y, celebrated, honored and appreciated the women of our community.

On 9th March 2016 early in the morning at 7.30 am, more than 300 young women and men joined us for an outreach program. The outreach program was based on the theme of our celebrations – appreciate the women around us. We chose to divide ourselves into various groups, took on the jackets and brooms, wore gloves, and went on an expedition to clean the city streets early in the morning as done by the BBMP women workers. As reported, the women BBMP workers get 50% less as compared to the male worker. We met as many as we could, thanked them for their endless services and shared the message of A Clean City through our mission. We also took immense pride in cleaning our college campus. We also strengthened the women maintenance staff team. I took an opportunity on IWD 2016 celebrations to share the message and vision of our SDG 2030 and Goal 5 widely among these 300+ young men and women.

In the afternoon, we invited 150 women and young girls from that section of the society who has been providing relentless services to the society yet as women they are never accepted. These women were orphans, BBMP women workers, sex workers, acid attack survivors, household workers and college maintenance staff. These women had been invited as the Chief Guest of the event. We screened an inspirational kannada (local language) movie  “Gulabi Talkies” for them, provided each one of them with Lunch and respected their work by listening to all of them and by giving a gift. These women have taken due pride on being invited to such an esteemed institution and on receiving such hospitality and love.

We had a small discussion with these women, as it’s equally important to involve the marginalized women of our society in the forefront of our vision of 2030. Listening to the grievances of each one of them, we realized the aged women get out-tracked from the support of government due to which, these women are exposed to death on the streets.

Here are some photos from the day:

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