The Suhana Safar Program, spearheaded by Development Alternatives (DA) since 2016, has been dedicated to transforming the lives of truck drivers, a demographic often overlooked in community development initiatives. Recognising the dearth of initiatives tailored for this community, DA acknowledges the unique challenges faced by truck drivers, including the lack of access to creature comforts, hygiene, financial stability, and healthcare; due to their demanding lifestyle, DA has endeavoured to provide support and empowerment to this community.
In Thakhatpur, Bilaspur, a beacon of empowerment has emerged under the Rural Industrial Park Ganiyari. Through collaborative efforts, our team has transformed the lives of 400 women by establishing a stitching unit. The backbone of this success story lies in the establishment of a stitching unit equipped with 400 advanced sewing machines.
During one of the Suhana Safar training programs, we met Monvir Singh, a truck driver at the Piyala Depot, Uttar Pradesh. An Uttar Pradesh native, Monvir has spent the last thirteen years working as a truck driver. Previously impressed by the knowledge he gained in the prior session, he returned to the Suhana Safar program to enhance his sector knowledge.
Sudhir Kushwaha is a Work4Progress Phase II entrepreneur from Laadpura in Niwari engaged in the Electronics Retail sector. With initial capital challenges, he gained experience working at a hardware store before starting his own shop, Jai Gaud Baba Electronics, in October 2019.
Brijesh Raja Chauhan, hailing from a small village, defied societal norms and started a tailoring enterprise despite initial resistance from her husband and ire in the Thakur community. Her success inspired a wave of entrepreneurship among women in her village.
Munni Devi, a resident of Bathua village, Mirzapur, is a lady with immense strength, one who fought the shackles of patriarchy and poverty for her family, especially her specially-abled daughter and is now a successful e-rickshaw entrepreneur.
Tannu hails from the village of Jajjal Toki, a story that resonates as an inspiring tale of her unwavering determination to secure employment. Born to Mukesh, a diligent farmer, and a homemaker mother, Tannu is one of six siblings, comprising three sisters and two brothers.
Dipanjali, a resilient stay-at-home mother, faced financial struggles with her husband working as a construction labourer. Determined to contribute, she explored job opportunities but was hindered by her son's health issues. The turning point came when she discovered HDBFS Skill Development Centre, offering hope through vocational courses and job placements.
Lakshmi Soni, a resident of Jakhaura village in Lalitpur, embodies the spirit of women's empowerment through her remarkable journey. Married to Manoj Kumar, a sculptor, Lakshmi is a mother of two, with a son and a daughter. Raised in the village of Rath in Hamirpur district, her maternal home was one of comfort.
Hailing from Pratap Nagar, Jaipur, Ravi Kumar Sharma's journey began amid financial hardship, with his father, a farmer, struggling to support a family of seven. As the eldest son, Ravi felt a deep sense of responsibility to contribute to his family's income.