Women Empowerment Projects In India
Travel to India and volunteer to empower women!
Poverty, social division and superstitious beliefs victimize thousands of women and young girls in India. Many of these women are both poor and illiterate. Through our micro-finance project, our main goal is to build self-reliance by developing skills in knitting, paper bag making and stitching. Located in Jaipur, this project helps women earn for not only living but to support their children’s education also. The project is a unique chance to observe the process of how handmade paper bags are produced, stitched and tailored. In addition, volunteers can also participate in teaching at a nearby school, which serves disadvantaged children. Generally, morning our volunteers teach these children and in the afternoon help in making these handmade items and learn about the women in India.
There are no specific educational experiences, skills or qualifications needed to join IFRE’s women's support project in India. However, volunteers are expected to be flexible and patient. Volunteers should have a passion and love to share with these poor and exploited women and young girls. Creativity is highly valued in our volunteers so that you can provide inspiration and guidance to these women and girls!
The women's empowerment projects in India aim to help destitute women's groups (comprised of both young girls and adult women). Our project helps them rebuild their self-esteem in hopes of leading a productive life with their heads held high and happiness in their heart. Volunteers contribute to a variety of activities, ranging from teaching English to skill development training for young girls and adult women. For the young kids, generally girls, a volunteer will teach English organize creative extra-curricular activities (singing, dancing, art and playing). For the adult women, a volunteer will teach English and help in skill-development (such as stitching and tailoring – skills that will later help these women in their quest to be self-sustainable).
IFRE manages living accommodations, provides meals and supervision for volunteers for the entirety of their stay in India. During the volunteer period, most volunteers stay in our safe and secure home base, a project hostel or a host family. Dependent on the season and flow of volunteers, you may be placed in any of the following:
- Our office and home base is located in Gurgaon, a beautiful city 40 miles a way of Delhi international airport. This location is very safe and manned with onsite security. It is a clean, sparsely furnished apartment but will meet all your needs as an IFRE volunteers. It is close to the local bus station. This is the ideal arrangement for sharing your daily experiences with fellow volunteers and local staff. Home base bedrooms have multiple beds, so volunteers will usually share a room (same gender). Our in-country coordinator also lives at our home base to assist our volunteers 24/7.
- Our local host families are socially respected and are experienced with hosting international volunteers. They have strong interest in our volunteers’ safety and well-being and demonstrate this with caution and care. In most host family situations, volunteers will share a room with another volunteer of the same gender.
- Another viable option is an at-orphanage or project hostel stay. Many orphanages in India have set aside special rooms to house international volunteers.
IFRE arranges room, food and supervision for volunteers throughout the program. All of IFRE’s cooks prepare a variety of delicious Indian food (naan, dahl and chapatti breads, curries, rice and pickles/chutneys). Details covering the arrangements for room/food are outlined in the prepared placement details. Volunteers will also have 24/7 access to IFRE's office as well as the mobile numbers of in-country coordinators. In addition, the director of the orphanage will serve as a local contact person for volunteers. IFRE's staff also visits each volunteer every 1-2 weeks as part of our program.
Please provide a typical day for volunteers in the Indian Women Empowerment Project
While volunteering in India, volunteers generally stay in the orphanage where their project is. Most of the orphanages of India have built separate rooms to host volunteers.
A typical daily schedule would be as follows:
- 7:30 am – Breakfast with your host family
- 8:30 am – Volunteers leave home and travel to their placements. Work hours are dependent on the project and the volunteer’s placement.
- 1:30 pm – Return home for lunch break
- 2 pm – 4.00 pm – : You can go into town for the Internet or shopping
- 7 pm – 9.00 pm – Dinner with your host family
What kind of activities volunteers do in women empowerment project?
Volunteers working in the women empowerment project must be very flexible. This project does not have a fixed work or volunteer schedule. Volunteers need to be flexible, proactive and willing to do whatever work is assigned. The following are examples of tasks volunteers may be faced with while volunteering with woman in India:
- Assist local Indian women with expanding their vocational skills
- Offer creative ideas for income generating activities
- Help with the education of the children
- Assist with the community health projects
Where are the projects located?
Jaipur and Ajmer – Rajesthan Jaipur, the capital of Rajesthan, is known as “Pink City” and is a part of Golden triangle (Delhi-Jaipur-Agra). This is also renowned for the land of Rajputs, a group of warriors that controlled this part since the medieval period. This is a truly exotic and colorful land.
Ajmer is 150km from Jaipur and also part of Rajesthan. It is known for desert safari and Ajmer Muslim Dargha. People here in Rajesthan speak Rajesthani (Madwari) and Hindi languages. The state consists of forts and palaces, making it one of the best destinations to explore in India.
Rajputs, the kings of Rajesthan, were allied with the British, which allowed them to continue their independence. They still existed after India’s independence, but Indira Gandhi abolished them in 1970s.
What are the requirements to join the program?
There are no requirements, however volunteers who speak Hindi and have experience working with woman are beneficial to the program.
Do we get hands-on experience at this project?
Yes, you can. Volunteers can join in on all of the work carried out by this organization. It is mostly a hands-on volunteer experience.
What kind of support do we get during the project time?
Volunteers’ receive 24/7 emergency support, tour/travel information and a family atmosphere.
How many hours a day do we need to work?
In total, you will work 5-7 hours a day. During the time of festivals and hot summers, the duration may be decreased for 3-5 hours a day.
Is the women’s empowerment project available year-round? When will it close and for how long?
Yes, the opportunity to volunteer with women in India is available year-round however; volunteers will have less work during festivals.
Is there any other important information you want to share about this project?
You need to come with an open mind. The Women Empowerment Project does not have any fixed work or schedule. These project run many programs like education, job training, and health, therefore you need to be very flexible. In many situations, you may need to develop a program (like English teaching) to women. This project is good for flexible, proactive and creative volunteers.