Project Saheli, a joint initiative of the District Legal Services Authority and National Urban Livelihood Mission Durg (Nagar Nigam Durg), was launched on November 9, also celebrated as the National Legal Services Day.
Saheli is aimed at social re-integration of victims of crime through vocational training programmes. It is a self-help group for women hailing from Bhilai and Durg who have previously been victims of crime. The project involves training and counselling of 30 women who will manufacture handmade sewed sanitary pads which will be marketed and distributed with the help of community resource persons and will be made available in government schools/ Jan Aushodhi Kendra/ panchayat offices, tribal hostels, among other places. Project Saheli will also constitute another self-help group of tribal and rural woman entrepreneurs who will be trained as product managers, marketing managers and distribution managers- responsible for growth of the pad market in respective wards.
Digvijay Singh, Secretary, District Legal Services Authority Durg launched the initiative. In his inaugural address, Singh asserted on the fact that weekly legal awareness training programmes will be conducted at the centre. The idea behind propagating legal awareness through judicial officers and para legal volunteers is to impact everyday lives of everyday people.
Muktesh Kanhe, manager, NULM Durg focused on the importance of skill development programmes in lives of women of the households while also stressing on the impact of Project ‘Saheli’ on the Swachh Bharat Mission.
Shikhar Shrivastava, final year student of Hidayatullah National Law University who leads in the capacity of the project coordinator, informed that ‘Saheli’ is focused on awareness, accessibility and affordability of sanitary napkins and social re-integration of victims of crime. Sudarshini Nath, a student of HNLU who has designed the sanitary pad, informed that Saheli pads are 70% cheaper than the market price. Ashish Sao, Harsh Shukla, Naman Tripathi, Vaibhav Sahu, Jayani Daklawala, Kritika and Bhanupriya, all students of HNLU, are pioneers behind the implementation of this project. The first Saheli centre is run by a VTP based out of Durg.