In India, more than a third of women report having been beaten by their partner *. To support victims of domestic violence, as well as other vulnerable women, Aide et Action’s iLEAD program offers opportunities for women to gain freedom and independence through professional training.
Violence against women and girls is one of the most widespread, persistent and devastating human rights violations. Yet it very often remains largely unreported due to the impunity, silence, and stigma that surround it. According to the United Nations, 1 in 3 women and girls experience physical or sexual violence in their lifetime, most often from an intimate partner.
Sadly, one of our project participants Patrisha, a young Indian woman, was one of these statistics. Patrisha was forced to flee her abusive husband but with little to no education and skills, she didn’t know how to support herself and her children even though it was her dream.
A unique opportunity
With two children in tow, Patrisha moved in with her mother but she knew living and depending on her mother could only be a short-term solution. Fortunately, a friend introduced Patrisha to our iLEAD program. Our program offer young people between the ages of 18 and 32 vocational training and support in finding a job and Patrisha grabbed this opportunity with both hands, enrolling in our Beauty Therapy course as quickly as she could.
She completed her three months of training and went for on-job training at a parlor run by an iLEAD alumnus. After working there for a few months, she availed financial assistance of INR 50,000 from iLEAD to start her parlor in Umsning. Patrisha now earns INR 4,000 to 5,000 per month and has finally transformed into a confident and independent young woman.
More than 100,000 empowered women
Over the past 15 years, Aide et Action, through the iLEAD program, has been engaging with survivors of domestic violence and other vulnerable women, leading to the empowerment of more than 100,000 women, mostly from marginalized communities.
(* Source: SWISSAID)