All power to Nashik women

Chartered in 2002, RC Nasik Grapecity was the lead club in hosting the first-ever women Rotarians conference in RI District 3030. Club member Asha Venugopal, District Events Secretary, was instrumental in its success. Rightly so, for women ­constitute 60 per cent of its total membership which is poised to reach a strength of at least 55 by Jun 2019 from the present 49.

“We have taken up a slew of ­women-centric projects such as ­micro-credit to Adivasi women, ­benefitting 50–60 persons each year. Around ₹1.25 crore was disbursed to small entrepreneurs since 2008. In healthcare, tribal women were screened for low haemoglobin count and free medicines were given to them,” says Naresh Shah, the Enclave Chair for Nashik clubs. He was also the charter president of RC Nasik Grapecity. On the literacy front, 20–30 e-learning kits were distributed to Zilla Parishad schools in the last five years.

Mammography buses

While two mammography and ­cervical cancer detection buses (global grant projects) are doing the rounds over the last three years, a third such ­vehicle costing ₹1.5 crore and ­sponsored by RC Amaravati Midtown was flagged off six months ago. “The ­specially-equipped buses, having a six-member crew including a doctor and a manager, would have screened over 72,000 women in and around Nashik,” says Shah.
Having found that tribals in Kotumbi and Waghchouda padas (Adivasi hutments) were affected by skin diseases, “they were taught basic hygiene and sanitation. ­Moreover, these women are trained in soap making with neem leaves, aloe vera and turmeric,” says Durga Sali, Club President.

Rotarians of RC Nasik Grapecity with a Mammography bus in the background.
Rotarians of RC Nasik Grapecity with a Mammography bus in the background.

Soon a vocational centre will teach women of low-income ­families ­need-based skills such as ­plumbing, repairing household gadgets and driving. The club is working on ­refurbishing Kishore Sudhralay, a juvenile home.

The club’s Service Director Sandhya Jain has come up with a ­proposal to organise self-defence camps for girls in slums.

Galvanising Rotaractors

So far, the club has sponsored one Rotaract club and three ­Interact clubs. An inter-district RYLA at Sangamner, 70 km en route to Pune, attracted 57 teenagers. A ­multi-district Rotaract conference is planned in March 2019.

Manning traffic signals and ­regulating traffic flow will be taught to Interactors in a time-bound ­programme and certificates will be given to all participants.

During the Kumbh Mela, that occurs once in 12 years, along with other clubs in Nashik, “we hold ­medical camps, aid police for lost and found material, missing ­people, and ­distribute food packets and ­refreshments for ­pilgrims,” says DGND Ramesh Meher. The city attracts around 12 lakh ­devotees a day from all over the country for a holy dip in the Godavari river at ­Triambakeshwar during the auspicious month.

The club has set a target of $6,000 in TRF giving this year and since inception, would have contributed around $75,000. So far, it has four Major Donors to its credit.

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