What is Project Esther? Project Esther is about restoring the identity, beauty & dignity of Women in distress by giving them holistic opportunities to learn, work and develop resources for their families.
Why Project Esther? There are many Women in India who are not only battling struggles of their poverty but they also have to deal with other issues which put them in deep distress. Some of their common problems are as follows:
Lack of education: Often in the villages of India Girls are expected to fulfill domestic duties and education is seen as secondary for them. The parents of a girl do not want to waste money and time on her as they think that women should be wedded off as soon as possible. Sometimes schools are too expensive or far away. The lack of education is one of the major causes for many other problems such as poor health and hygiene practices.
Mistreatment: In India violence against women common not just in remote parts but also in cities. They experience physical and mental violence. Every hour a woman is raped in India. Every 93 minutes a woman is burnt to death due to dowry problems (family of the husband pressuring family of the wife for more dowry money). There are laws in India to protect women but the conviction rate of offenders is very low.
Overworked: Indian women work more than men of India but their work is hardly recognized as they mainly do unskilled work.
What are the practical ways Project Esther seeks to help Women in Distress?
There are many issues Women in India among the lower strata of society face but we will proved the following to help address those problems:
1. Unemployment – Training & Development in Skills and forming self – help groups.
2. Poverty – Promotion of income generation programmes
3. Dowry Culture & battering – Awareness programmes through workshops, counseling and street theatre.
4. Unhealthy worldview – Project Esther therefore seeks to follow
5 practical doable steps to help Women selected and identified holistically. The S.T.E.P.S are as follows:
Selection of Women in Distress: The Process of Selection will be based on recommendations from Local Pastors and other Community leaders. They will fill up an application form for our verification. We will seek to recruit 25-35 Women every quarter and increase it progressively. Getting a reference form their local leaders or Pastors will enable us to screen the candidates.
Training & Development: We will have their training in formal and non-formal style. This will be an in-house modular form of training as our research tells us that it’s the best way to impact them holistically. They will go through 360 hours of skill development training in 90 days and another 120 hours of teaching from the Bible on Character and Spiritual formation. By the end of 90 days, they will be able to get a job or start a business in the field of Tailoring, Will have a basic understanding of computers, and we will also expose them to spoken English skills.
Empowering: Project Esther will seek to help and assist the applicant with creative ways of empowering and championing them in their own context.
Providing Opportunities for income generation At the end of their respective training module, we will connect them to existing opportunities through YWAM’s database and for deserving and needy candidates an appropriate income-generating tool will be given. Support groups Project Esther will facilitate our trained women by creating support groups. These groups will continue to serve by counseling, facilitating technical assistance if needed and coaching them to be Women of honor. These groups will also be a place for conducting awareness programs on issues facing them.
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