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Guild for Service-Dr Mohini Giri’s NGO works to empower women

BY GORKY BAKSHI 
Women’s plight always raises a question mark on male dominance and society’s prejudicial attitude. But a street that goes to Gender Resource Centre of an NGO at Najafgarh, makes an honest attempt to help women lead a life filled with joy, pride and dignity.
Guild for Service – an NGO working for women empowerment since 1972, helps women overcome the social and economic problems and deal with their personal crisis and also helps women to earn their  livelihood and lead a dignified life.
Dr. V. Mohini Giri is a chairperson of Guild for Service, she says: “The Guild for Service carried out various women empowerment projects designed to increase their self-esteem and confidence that encourage their social interaction. We also try to improve their earning potentials.”
Establishment
Dr. Mohini Giri is former chairperson of National Commission for Women (NCW). She has been deeply involved with social service for long. She said: “When I was in chair at NCW, I surveyed 544 districts of India to know their conditions and came across several disturbing gender issues. Realising the problems of women, I started the War Widows Association. Later, we started Guild and here we are trying to change the attitude of the traditional society.”
How it works
• The NGO has several projects for women empowerment and widows. They help women making a decent earning by selling products made by them. In Delhi, NGO runs its centres Shubham at Najafgarh, Sawai Madhopur and Vrindavan at Uttar Pradesh. The NGO also started its centres in Tsunami affected areas of Tamil Nadu and Kashmir.
• NGO runs ‘Mahila Panchayat’ at Najafgarh to help rural women.  “We empower and educate women on their legal and social rights. Information regarding legal procedures, filing FIRs and other basic legal matters are discussed there. During 2010-2011, 116 cases were registered with us and 98 have been resolved so far,” informed Dr. Giri.
• Near Sarvodya Kanya Vidyala of Najafgarh, the  NGO runs a ‘Stree Suvidha Kendra’ in association with Department of Social Welfare, Delhi Government. According to the Dr. Giri, “The centre acts as development catalyst or women particularly those belonging to the underprivileged sections of the society. We are giving vocational training like nursing, cutting, tailoring, basic computer training, beauty courses etc.”
“Last year, 54 inmates enrolled in beauty culture course and most of them are happily employed in beauty parlors,” informs Dr. Giri.
• Apart from that, the Guild also runs counselling centre for women where they can get free of cost consultation for the issues like legal aid, women hostel or vocational training.
“We also organise group marriages for those from low economic background. On April 2010 in a holy ceremony 14 couples tied at this ceremony. The function was organised in headquarter at Qutab Institutional area,” said Kalpana Bhoungale, councillor at Guild for Service.
Funds
How they generate funds for all these schemes, Dr. Giri says that donations and government schemes help them to prepare women for vocational training. Apart from that inmates of various service centers prepare many items for sale such as leather purses, Woolen mufflers, kitchen aprons, table mats, greeting cards, embroidery work etc.
What’s Next
“We are planning to start few new recreational services for widows of Vrindavan so that they can feel happy even in tough times. Also, more areas are being identified where vocational courses can be started. Our volunteers are working throughout India,” informs Mohini Giri.
Contact: C-25, Qutab Institutional Area, Qutab Institutional Area, New Delhi-110016
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