The Story of
Bimala BK, 24 year old Dalit woman currently living at ward No. 8 of Mangalsen Municipality, was married at a very young age and because of that she was so dependent on her husband and the family even for small expenses. Her dependency on them made her weak mentally as it was a lot for her to take in. Well not only mentally, but she was physically vulnerable and exhausted because of the never ending domestic workload she had to do.
Living at a place where the Dalit settlement is like darkness under a lamp and where the people doesn’t have proper access to services, hence bounded to work for low wages due to poverty, illiteracy and unemployment, Ms. BK was slowly losing her purpose in life. But while there was no actual plans or programs from any governmental or non-governmental body to change their lives, FEDO reached there as a ray of hope and formed a women’s group to help them in their economic sustainability. She too came in contact and remained in the group with some hope for change. She participated in various sessions of leadership development and economic empowerment trainings. As we realized her situation and desperate need to come out of the trap of poverty, we encouraged her to participate in entrepreneurship development trainings particularly in vegetable farming and now she is cultivating vegetables by mobilizing the money saved in women group. Similarly, FEDO also provided reliefs and psychosocial counseling amid the pandemic which somehow aware her to stay safe from the virus.
She shares because of illiteracy, she couldn’t even introduce herself in a group but now after getting into the group, she got a new motive to live. Standing stronger and confident, she is now able to socialize with anyone around. She is doing some savings, and also utilizing that money in vegetable cultivation.
Being in group has helped Bimala and other Dalit women to become aware on various issued related to caste and gender based discrimination, child rights, importance of health and sanitation as well as education. Women after having some source of income, they have started to send their children to school as well as are more aware on the aspects of maintaining good health and clean environment. Bimala, now is a confident woman and helps and encourages other women group to become economically active and spreads awareness on the importance of education and cleanliness.