Bhagyashree is in her first year of college and she’s boldly going where no Ashraya kid has been before….into fashion designing! In a society with a preference for doctors and engineers, Bhagyashree’s unique career choice and her internship with Ashraya makes her our feature for this issue.
She has been attending Ashraya classes nearly every day since she was in the 4th standard. After 10th, she was given the opportunity of interning with Ashraya for two months, in which she learned how to use the computer, developed her English skills, and taught a few pre-primary classes.
Bhagyashree was happily surrounded by clothes as a child and her sister was a tailor, so she learned how to sew and decided to pursue fashion designing in college. She is great with the sewing machine; she put together an entire salwaar kameez dress in a day for a younger student for the Annual Day.
Now that she is studying fashion design, her favorite part of the process is sketching and imagining ensembles, especially the long, embellished skirts worn as traditional wear in India, called gaghras. She hopes to open a boutique one day and we wish her the best!
Aditi Burutkar’s ambition is extraordinary. She has taken advantage of every single opportunity that has come her way. A school “topper” and a recipient of quite a few school awards, Aditi is all about achieving success in the fields that she excels in and is passionate about.
Ashraya selected two students to attend a leadership camp in Dehradun, Uttarakhand at the end of May. Aditi was one and Saniya Dalal the other (we’ve written a Facebook post about their selection). This ten day camp included adventure activities, critical thinking exercises, theater, and space to debate about big social issues facing India.
When we say that our models for adolescent development and education are holistic, we literally mean that we start from the womb and end when the child is placed in a job.
A child cannot grow up well if her/his mother is not well fed and cared for. We see to the mother’s health when she is pregnant by providing supplements. When the child is born, the mother brings her baby to our health center’s mother-baby classes and we focus on their nutrition and hygiene. Then, the child attends extra classes, beginning from nursery, all the way to 10th standard. And we don’t stop there; we want to see our students studying in colleges around the city (and around the world) and then land a job. Ultimately, we want them to take the leadership in transforming their communities, where once, going to school wasn’t an option. But we don’t live in such times anymore. Quality education is a right for every child and we want them to become change makers in their own communities. by teaching the importance of education to future generations.