SAS animates and guides rural women in the formation of Self-Help Groups; helps them to mobilize finances from government and banks; creates opportunities for income generation and personality development. It helps them in the area of advocacy and networking for tackling gender discrimination and violence against women and for achieving socio economic development.

Women & Men for Others

Shramik Abhivrudhi Sangh (Jana Jagaran) has been conducting numerous seminars for the capacity building of SHG members in North Karnataka and in some villages of Kolhapur District of Maharashtra. It conducted one such program at Kavalikatti of Chandgad Taluk, District Kolhapur. 700 women from 40 Self Help Groups gathered enthusiastically on 16th January 2016 at Kavalikatti to celebrate life and to learn from one another’s experiences and to work out various strategies to benefit from government’s various poverty alleviation schemes and laws. They came in large numbers from Rajgoli and Rajewadi of Chandgad taluk and Shettihalli, Managutti, Bidrewadi, Narsingpur and Yamakanmardi of Hukkeri taluk.

Mr Ashok Deshpande, a social activist and friend of Jana Jagaran, enlightened the women on various aspects of their personality development and the need for organized action for the proper implantation of MGNREGA in their villages.

Fr. Joe Chenakala the founder and secretary of SAS thanked the men gathered at the meeting site and the men of the respective villages for consistently supporting the various initiatives of Jana Jagaran and more specially for supporting and encouraging the women folk to actively participate in the SHG moment and other initiatives of Jana Jagaran for women development and integral rural development. He thanked the men folk of Kavalikatti village for taking responsibility for the arrangement of the meeting place and the preparation and serving of food for such a large gathering. He encouraged and motivated the gathering through folk stories how they can change their mind set and progressively achieve results even beyond their imagination. He also acknowledged publicly the tremendous work and the remarkable achievements of the volunteers of the organization and the women’s groups. He pointed out that jana jagaran is the responsibility of the village elders and of the elected representatives and he sought the support of everyone for the cause for which Jana Jagaran works.

Mr. Desai, a panchayat member and the police patil of the village and the Panchayat Development Officer shared with the gathering vital information on MGNREGA and other developmental schemes of the government. The PDO of Kavalikatti assured his whole hearted support in implementing all the schemes meant for the poor and for the development of the village.

Mr Shankar Kalluri, Mr Yeshwant Bhandurge and Mr Piraji Mahut the volunteers of Jana Jagarn motivated and guided and accompanied them in implementing the various initiatives of Jana Jgaran and also of the government - e.g., SHG movement, functional vocational training for school dropouts, biogas plants and toilet construction, organic farming and kitchen garden. They used the medium of skits, action songs and stories to communicate their message effectively.

The women too shared their experiences - the story of their personal growth, their struggles to get various government schemes implemented, their growth in personal and financial independence through the SHG dynamics and their discovery of the wider outer world

through cultural tours including their travel by plane to Delhi.

The participants returned home recharged, with renewed enthusiasm to work for their further personal development and the development of their respective villages. They are determined to make their villages a better place not just for themselves but also for the future generations.

Joe Chenakala sj {}




These short utterances are from a group of 30 persons from Idalhond and Guramatti - two remote villages of Belgaum Taluka, Karnataka State. The Group consisted of 28 women and two men in the age group of 28 to 72. All of them are members of Self Help Groups formed, animated and guided by ‘Jana Jagaran’ Belgaum. They dared to dream the impossible!  Crossing the barriers of poverty, illiteracy, and rustic life, they planned and carried out ‘Bharat Darshan’: a journey from their remote village > Belgaum > Pune > Delhi > Agra > Varanasi > Mumbai > Belgaum > back home, with a Pune-Delhi Flight added. They roped in at their cost, Mr Shankar Kalluri and Fr. Santosh Vas sj of Jana Jagaran for the trip. The finances were not a restraint. They believe that money is for man and not man for money, that the only function of money is to satisfy the basic necessities of human life and to fulfill the deepest aspirations of the human spirit.

It was the first train journey for thirteen group members, the first boat journey for seventeen and the first flight for all the rest. While travelling by train one woman shouted excitedly, “Look, who’ll travel in those boxes?”  It took a little time for the group to realize that she was referring to the goods wagons… and all the others had a very hearty laugh! Surely, this outing was a dream-come-true for those 28 SHG women and 2 men.

On rare occasions, they had travelled by bus and train and had envied often the ‘big’ personalities who travelled by planes that sailed through the clouds and disappeared into the distant horizon. Initially a flight was just a dream for them, and then it became a possibility and an obsession and now a reality.  Their mantra “I can…I want it …” has turned into “I did it”.

On 16 March 2015 they took the Pune-Delhi Flight. They journeyed on 15th night by train from Belgaum to Pune. They had a day in Pune and in the evening they took the Delhi Flight. The women were daring and enthusiastic and yet scared and nervous about the flight.  They had seen the reports and visuals in T V channels of plane crashes and were conscious of the taunts of friends and foes. Once the plane took off, they were relaxed. Up in the sky, one woman wondered aloud whether the plane was moving or had stopped in the midair. They couldn’t believe that a cup of coffee costs Rs.100 in the plane!