Thursday, October 9, 2008

2009 Calendar Benefiting Indian Women

We're always talking about how you can help save the world, even in small ways. My friend Chelsea went to India with her grad school classmates last year. Her group worked with a group in Madurai province called Kalangarai, which was created shortly after the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004 to help widowed and abandoned women. To date, Kalangarai has provided over 1,700 micro-credit loans to women so they can start businesses and started self help groups in 100 villages.

Chelsea says, "We worked mostly with widows and abandoned women, who are considered by Indian society as unworthy and are discriminated against on a daily basis. These women are living in conditions that are unimaginable to the likes of us Westerners.

"They are not only struggling with providing for their families but they are faced with brutal physical, verbal and sexual abuse at the hands of people that live alongside them in their villages. They are shunned and made to feel inhuman.

"I was struck with disbelief and grief when I heard of what these women faced every day. Despite all this, they showed so much strength and determination to survive in this hostile environment. I knew I needed to do something to help."

So Chelsea and her peers created a small 2009 desk calendar with photos from their trip and information about Kalangarai, and are selling it for just $10 (see photos of the 2009 calendar below). All proceeds are going to help build a center for the women where they can obtain legal assistance, counseling, job skills, and temporary shelter.

If you'd like to purchase a calendar (or three) from Chelsea, just email her at Chelsea Lettieri at gmail dot com to set up a time to meet and exchange the funds for the calendars. If you don't live in Boston, I'm sure she knows how to use the lovely United States Postal Service. Don't worry, she's trustworthy. I can personally vouch for her, if that means anything. :-)

The 2009 desk calendar!

Related Posts: India: The haves and the have-nots; Giving away $80K; Who is happier?; International volunteering for teens

Photos courtesy of me. I bought three calendars! To see more photos of my own trip to India, visit my India web album.

2 comments:

Casey said...

I can hardly wait to start using my calendar in '09!

Chelsea said...

They are going fast so if you are interested in purchasing a calendar please email me: chelsea.lettieri@gmail.com :)