Hello I’m Shalini Shikha from Madhubani Bihar. I studied in Banasthali Vidyapith Rajasthan and now I’m pursuing my bachelor’s degree from Satyawati College, University of Delhi. I have always been passionate about doing something different, something unique, something that goes to those who need my work. For me it is not about earning million bucks, it is about changing million lives.
So, I started “SAAKARSHAILI” for the women living in slums of Delhi who will now get a platform to showcase their skills of creativity and greater exposure to markets. This is an initiative where women will be taught “MITHILA PAINTING”. The handmade work will then be sold to traders. All the cost of materials will be borne by the initiators and 60% of return will be given to the women for their hard-work. This social cause is to be first implemented in LAL-BAGH slum which later will be taken on a large scale. It comes with a vision to eradicate unemployment and to educate them. It comes with a vision of learning while earning. It is an initiative to explore.
Now you might be thinking what is so special in what I did. Yes so here is my story. I’m from a society where one out of 50 girls get a chance to study. I’m from a society where girls of my age have 2-3 babies. I’m from a society in which girl in jeans, girl talking to a boy, girls who hangout and uploads pictures while hanging-out, going to areas like slums are considered to have questionable character. Maximum permission that my society can grant me is to have a so called “respectable job” till the age of 23, later to which I am supposed to get married. But I am lucky to have a father like mine. Irrespective of the fact that he is one of the most respectable man in the society my father took this step to send me out for studies, to provide me what is best for me. I know he never shows but he fights a lot for me. He allowed me to study but he also dreamt of me doing a respectable job according to my society. But even after completing my intermediate by PCM I took step to pursue ECONOMICS and follow my passion. I know I worked against the person who did a lot for me, in direct sentences I betrayed my father who always supported me. But I know one day he will be proud of me and I will change the meaning of society and respectable job. I know if I fail it will be because I didn’t performed 100% not because I choose something wrong. I do not care if people say that I didn’t achieve anything big but I care about my father I never want that people will make him regret his decisions. I can accept defeat but I never want to see my father defeated. It might sound like a very small problem, but to me it is a big risk. The only thing inside my head and heart is to stand for what I believe in and transform the lives of others through my action.
(YIC IIT Delhi 2017)