Threads of Hope

May 26, 2018 · Women Empowerment

Out of 1.27 billion people in India, 614.4 million are women. In recent years, shocking incidents—crimes against women in India have been reported. According to Alzajeera’s recent research report, “A women in India is raped every 20 minutes—that amounts to, on average, 72 rapes everyday.” Another study reveals that between 1953 and 2011, the incidence of rape rose by 873 percent, or three timesfaster than all cognizable crimes put together, and three-and-a-half times faster than murder in India. Human trafficking is a reality in India. Operation World (2010) estimates that 90 percent of girls among children in India are abandoned and involved in prostitution in various cities in India. Poverty and discrimination are push factors for human trafficking. Girls and women between the ages of 6-18 from rural areas have been trafficked and forced into work in the cities.

Our women empowerment programs intentionally seeks to restore the hurting, equip the marginalized and resource the persecuted/suffering women through advocacy, life-skill training, counseling and empowering women leaders by providing a multi-faceted training program in northern Indian states. Since 2014, STEP International has trained and equipped more than 250 women through various programs. You will be encouraged to read a story of a woman being transformed by our program called “Threads of Hope.”

My name is Kajal (name changed). I am from Mirjapur village of West Bengal. I come from a tribal group called “Santal.” I used to work in bricks factory for 12 hours in a day. Life is hard in bricks factory. Violence, exploitation and hardship are part of life in bricks factories. Working in a bricks factory is a “modern day slavery.” It was my privilege to attend training program run by STEP International. I had the opportunity to learn sewing and computer. More than the life-skill training program, I had an incredible time attending counseling sessions that healed my emotional scars. I saw hope in my life. Thank you for the holistic training program. I have a new beginning now…