06.12.15 / Category: Impact - Grant Awards

Grantee Spotlight – Anchal Project

The Circle of Sisterhood supports entities that remove barriers to education for girls and women, uplifting them from poverty and oppression. Because of the generous support of our donors, we’ve had an impact in nineteen countries since our founding in 2010.

Educating women is central to poverty alleviation and sustainable development and because of the support of our donors, the Circle of Sisterhood is pleased to be able to award a $5000 grant to Anchal Project, an organization merging design, business, and education to empower marginalized and exploited women living in India. This organization’s multi-faceted program provides commercial sex workers in India the tools for personal empowerment and economic independence.
The Circle of Sisterhood grant will fund 12 monthly educational workshops and a 7-day intense training workshop for 100 women.

Anchal changes the lives of artisans, their families and communities by putting an end to inter-generational prostitution. It’s not simply about generating an income; it’s a matter of stigma. If a child’s mother is a sex worker in India, that child’s status is lower than low and there is virtually no chance of being accepted into a private school. The sense of dignity and purpose mediated by Anchal has broken the cycle of disenfranchisement and limited educational opportunities.

Anchal 2

With Circle of Sisterhood’s grant, Anchal is able to offer and strengthen monthly educational workshops to artisans, ultimately giving women the tools to rediscover their dignity and rise from exploitation and poverty. The workshops cover topics in design, leadership, financial literacy, entrepreneurship, women’s health, self-defense and stress management.

As expressed in their interim report, the benefits of the educational workshops are many. Program participants have shared that being able to learn and grow together in a safe, judgment-free space fosters community and positive change. One artisan shared: “I was living for myself, fending for myself, earning for myself before. But now, it is not the same. I feel I can do more, help other people and I actually want to help others now…with the gratification of being self-sustained and being appreciated; now we feel like helping others. And we do it in different ways. We help people financially and also give them emotional and psychological support when they need. We are ready to extend the benefits of our empowerment with others!”

Circle of Sisterhood funds are being put into action and Anchal reports great success. As evidenced by the quote above, the impact on one woman becomes impact on many.

Anchal 1