As part of the Preschool education project, we at Mumbai Smiles tie up with various SHGs or Self-Help groups, which are micro-financing groups formed by men and women of underprivileged communities, towards empowering and encouraging entrepreneurship among the women of these communities. The Self-Help Groups that we partner with are largely run by the women of slum communities who help us with providing nutritious daily meals to the students of our Preschool Education centres, as also to the Life Skills Empowerment centres and are in turn able to generate decent livelihood for themselves.
One of the SHG women, who is responsible for 3 of our Preschool centres’ daily meal is Noorjahan Sher Khan. 40 years old Noorjahan has been living in Vikroli’s Parksite’s slum area for last 15 years, with her husband and 2 children. While husband does daily labour work at an esteemed organisation, Noorjahan worked as hand-made jewelry maker at home. But it was very time consuming and the sales weren’t decent either. So one day she joined the local SHG and soon came in contact with our organisation.
“Joining Mumbai Smiles was one of the best decisions of my life. I get to meet children every day and enjoy with them. They always give me big smiles when I bring them food and put it in their Tiffin boxes. I forget all my sorrow when I am with them! And what is more satisfactory is that these children belong to the similar underprivileged socio-economic background as me and I feel proud to be able to serve them in whatever way I can and at the same time, I get to make different food everyday and that keeps it interesting for me. And with the income generated by this, I am able to support my family as equally as my husband. This association with Mumbai Smiles has made me an extremely content person and I enjoy my work a lot!”
At Mumbai Smiles, we are proud to have the support of such strong independent women like Noorjahan who have managed to become leaders of their own destiny!