Each year around the world, International Women's Day (IWD) is celebrated on March 8. In line with this year's theme of 'Connecting Girls, Inspiring Futures', the Essar Foundation undertook a variety of activities in local communities around our locations in India.
The Essar Foundation and Essar Power (Jharkhand) organized International Women's Day celebrations for villagers in Tori, Jharkhand.
A series of games and sports events, such as musical chairs, spoon race, and needle-and-thread race were organized. We also saluted the spirit of entrepreneurship of some women who, after being trained at the Essar Skill Centre, successfully took up sewing and tailoring as a source of income. Four trainees of the centre were acknowledged
Along with the celebrations the intention was to encourage women to participate in decision making in all realms of life and emphasizing their crucial role as a change agent for the family and society at large.
More than 100 women and girls from five villages around the Essar site participated in the event, and Essarites based at the Tori power project site attended the programme.
The Foundation celebrated International Women's Day with girl students of the NK Ruia Madhyamik School, Lonavala, and their mothers. The concept of celebrating Women's Day is a very new to the women who belong to the rural areas around the Essar Agrotech plant in Lonavala.
The event was not just about informing them about the success story of various women but also an effort to share inputs about their problems and empower them to resolve challenges by themselves.
We started off by screening a Marathi documentary, Streedhan, about the importance of a girl child in the family and about gender equality. After the documentary students shared their thoughts and their observations about the overall status of women in society. A discussion the followed, about the expectations of girl students from their family / mother. This discussion really gave the women a new point of view on their daughters' education and their own responsibilities towards it.
We also arranged a visit to the Essar Steel Processing & Distribution Facility
(ESPDF), Talegaon, Pune, so that the women could interact with the female employees
at the shop floor. The girls and their mothers were very excited to see
the plant and interact with the women's group who work at the plant. The girls and their mothers
asked lots of questions about their work, their education and
their overall experience as a woman in the steel industry. The responses were very positive and the interaction was an inspirational experience for the girls. The work atmosphere at the plant motivated girls to complete their education and strive for a career.
After the visit there was a short interaction with senior executives at the plant, which helped the women have a more positive attitude towards their daughters' education.
Since 2005, ELVK has been training women and teenagers at Hazira village for
skill building and self employment. During the Women's Day workshop, the trainees shared their views with
each other on their progress and the challenges they
face in everyday life. The young trainees then presented a cultural program.
Later, the women participated in a discussion on home economics, which included tips on saving cooking gas, electricity, water and money. Some remedial tips were also suggested. The participants then took a pledge to be self-dependent and realize the real meaning of Women's Day.
On the occasion International Women's Day, the Essar Foundation organized a painting competition among schoolchildren on the theme of 'Women's empowerment', at the Sagarika Kala Niketan in Paradip town. The objective of this programme was to encourage school children to visualize and reflect the empowering role of women in our society and lives through art.
The event was inaugurated by Surendra Kumar Sahu, Financial Adviser and Chief Accounts Officer, Paradip Port Trust. Sixteen students from six schools of the Paradip Notified Area Council and three local Gram Panchayats participated in the painting competition. Among others, faculty members and volunteers from Paradip College, and parents of participating children were present at the event. Two jury members were invited to judge and reward the artwork.
On March 8, as the day began, Dabuna village was alive with vibrant local women caught up in the spirit of togetherness, solidarity, and transformation.
These women, all members of the self-help groups (SHGs) promoted by Essar Foundation, celebrated International Women's Day at Dabuna Village, Keonjhar. The chief guest for the occasion, Dr Jharana
Following this, Pratima Patra of the Jayabajrangbali SHG presented the activity report of SHGs. So far 180 women have been organized through 12 SHGs. These SHGs have been able to mobilize a total savings of Rs 64,000, and are engaged in various income-generating activities. This has been possible with the support and guidance of the CSR team of Essar Foundation which has imparted training on different aspects to build their capacity and create sustainable livelihoods.
Earlier during the week, the Foundation organized various competitions on the issue of women's empowerment. The SHG members were very excited and participated with enthusiasm in the events, which were partly conceptualized by them.
Among others, Meera Rout, social scientist and educationist, addressed the audience on various issues of facing women today. She
exhorted the women stand together and face challenges with determination.
A prize distribution ceremony was also conducted to encourage the winners of
competitions organized earlier. More than 250 people participated
in the event.