Every Bollywood movie has a hero; a handsome fellow who saves a helpless maiden from the clutches of a terrible fate. Whether she is trapped in a crashed car poised to topple over a cliff, has been kidnapped by a disreputable would-be suitor, or lies unconscious on a railway track, the brave man will rush in to save her.
Beyond Bollywood, real heroes are a little different. They do exist, but they’re rarely handsome gentlemen. Indeed, they may even be ladies. In the Indian city of Aligarh, Neermala is one of these real heroes.
A note to the reader: this story contains details of domestic…
Poonam Nair (pictured) is a social worker with Saahasee, one of TEAR’s Indian partners. She works in the slums of Thane, on the outskirts of Mumbai, with women’s Self-Help Groups. Through her personal journey, she shares her insight into what happens when women are encouraged to gather, learn their rights, advocate to change their circumstances, and empowered to contribute to improving their communities.
I’m from a very simple background. When I was ten, I lost my mother. I then had to take the responsibility for my younger brother, who was 6 at that time. Being raised by my…
TEAR’s partner EFICOR helps communities access the government schemes to which they are entitled, enabling both communities and government services to flourish.
Often, the most significant transformation in a community is not the one that is most immediately obvious to the eye. In Khairi Mushari village in India, the community achievement that does immediately stand out is a brand-new, bright pink flood shelter (pictured above) built high over the flat plains. It’s their first community building, the result of years of planning by the village Disaster Management Committee (DMC) – a group…
What causes community disintegration? Anyone working in community transformation or, indeed, those living in communities in distress will tell you that just as there is no one symptom, there is no one cause.
EFICOR, an Indian Christian organisation, has run projects with thousands of poor and marginalised communities over its 47 years, many of them supported by TEAR Australia. Their community-based agriculture projects have trained farmers across the country, enabling them to make the most from their land. But only in the last few years have they been forced to introduce a new element to…
"Saahasee is called by God's love to see every poor home in our nation empowered and celebrating life in community where dignity, freedom and justice prevail."
- Saahasee vision statement
Vijay Lakshmi is named after the Hindu goddess of wealth and her name means “successful”. She married early, at around 16, and lives with her husband and his family in a room 3 metres square. Her husband is an unskilled labourer, and when they married, providing food every day was difficult.
Vijay lives in a culture where women are relegated to the fringes of justice, dignity, freedom and, sadly, even…
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TEAR Australia is a Christian development, relief and advocacy organisation responding to global poverty and injustice. More >
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