Our CSR activities are funded through both the Shashi Kiran Charitable Trust – a trust created in loving memory of Deki’s co-founder Mrs. Shashi Kumar - and the Company.Update on Deki’s Ongoing CSR Activities
We have partnered with The MoonCatcher Project, USA – a philanthropic organization based in Albany, New York. The centerpiece of MoonCatcher’s activity is a reusable washable menstrual kit. These kits are provided free of charge so girls may stay in school while menstruating giving them a greater chance of completing their education.
Our productive discussions with Mooncatcher early in 2018 led to a formative visit to Delhi by the organization’s Founder and Executive Director, Ellie von Wellsheim in October 2018. A production unit was set up n Noida employing five local women. All materials and sewing equipment are sourced locally. With rising productivity, the staff has already exceeded the production targets that we set.
MoonCatcher’s project includes an educational element that provides instruction on not only the biological basis of menstruation but also how to manage it – a critical gap in the typical curriculum in developing countries. In addition, MoonCatcher’s operational model is to also provide employment to local women for the production of the reusable pads. It is also critical to note the use of these reusable pads works toward reducing landfill waste that would otherwise result from the use of disposable pads.
Starting in December 2018 we began working on developing new alliances and partnerships to expand the distribution network for the MoonCatcher pads our center produces. This effort also includes creating awareness, breaking taboos and educating boys through our educational workshops on Menstrual Hygiene and Management. Since we began this outreach, we have distributed over 9000 kits to schoolgirls in Noida, Delhi, Nasik, Dehradun, Rajasar, Patiala, Rishikesh and Imphal. Our MoonCatcher kits have also reached Nepal.
In Manipur we are partnering with the Government of Manipur. Currently we are working with the DC of Imphal East who is taking our kits and awareness program to all government and government aided schools in her district. We have also partnered with Global Shapers Imphal hub to carry out awareness workshops and assist in the distribution under their project- 'BLEED WITH PRIDE' in collaboration with Shashi Kiran Charitable Trust , New Delhi (in partnership with @mooncatcherproject USA ) towards #empoweringgirls, creating awareness on menstruation and retaining them in schools by providing them free reusable pads.
Under this project the girls are educated on menstrual hygiene management and reproductive health. And are taught to shed away confusion, shame and taboos related with menstruation. #letgirlsbleedwithpride, #breakingbarriers, #periodtalk
Recently, we met Mrs Preneet Kaur, MP of Patiala who liked our project and invited us to Patiala to conduct our informational/educational sessions and to introduce and distribute the MoonCatcher reusable kits. She formally launched the project on October 31st, 2019. As of now, we have distributed 300 kits in the Patiala-area communities we visited.
A visit to the Parmarth Ashram in Rishikesh led to us launching a menstrual hygiene management (MHM) pilot project with the Ashram under their initiative via the Global Interfaith WASH Alliance (GIWA). We provided pertinent MHM training to their staff along with an initial distribution of 500 MoonCatcher kits. GIWA is developing a MHM-oriented lab on the premises that is focused on spreading awareness and social consciousness. Shashi Kiran has been invited to return to the Ashram in 2020 to further this relationship and promote MHM-related activities by providing more MoonCatcher kits.
As of the writing of this report, we have received a request from the Chairman of the Beti Bachao Beti Padhao task force to send 5000 more kits for Manipur for Tamenglong district.
We are continuing our support of the five girl students attending Marigold Public School, Noida. The girls continue to receive academic and remedial support from the Siddharth Memorial Charitable Trust. The girls are doing well, three of the girls are learning French and two of them got selected for a Robotics competition held in Lucknow. They made it through the first round, it was a great learning experience for them.