Meet Shashi Hartiwal, a 46-year old successful entrepreneur as well as homemaker, who was felicitated by our organisation last week on Women’s Day for her exemplary journey over the last few years, which is proving to be an inspiration for her friends and neighbours.
Shashi’s husband works as a make-up artist, her eldest daughter is in service, her second daughter has just completed her graduation and her youngest child, a son is giving his 12th Std (HSC) exams. And together Shashi and her husband are able to take care of their children’s educational needs and run the house together in a smooth manner with their annual income of Rs. 1,10,000.
This is her story, in her own words –
“17 years ago, my husband and I shifted to Mumbai from Bihar in search of a better life. But life looked up at me only a few years ago when I came to know about Mumbai Smiles and its helpful work through a friend in 2012, who was benefiting from their SEED project. She told me about the various courses and workshops which are held free of cost for people like us, living in slums and with limited financial resources to help us open up doors of opportunities for ourselves. I really liked the concept and immediately enrolled myself. At SEED, I completed my course of beautician and also got an opportunity to learn about handling personal finances and taking loans. Soon after, I and two of my fellow course-mates took up a loan and we opened our own beauty parlour near our community itself!
It took us three years to repay the loan but fourth year onwards, we have been able to make a good 5000-7000 per month and now I am able to support my family financially.
My job is so satisfying both financially and mentally. I get to meet so many different people, hear their various stories and feel so privileged to be some of their confidants as well! Not only that, during vacations, I am also able to train young girls and women the art of hairdressing and make-up in my parlour. Together, my colleagues and I have been able to train more than 100 women from my and neighbouring communities in my beauty parlour. I love my job and it has been possible only because of Mumbai Smiles!”
We are so proud and so thankful to women like Shashi who show tremendous strength in the face of adversities, yet continue fighting with us in our peaceful struggle against poverty! Thank you Shashi and may you climb the stairs of success higher and higher with each passing day for yourself as well as for others around you!