Volunteer in Jodhpur (Urban Site)
Volunteers are always welcome at Sambhali Trust and always needed. Since the volunteers are a big part of the organization there are lots of ways to take action and engage yourself in Sambhalis goal of changing womens life for the better. In the following you will find discriptions of all the roles at Sambhali Trust.
Most volunteers who come to Sambhali Trust choose to help with teaching the women and children who come to our empowerment centres and our newly formed primary education centres. Together with the tutor for each centre, the volunteers will teach basic English and Maths, whilst the tutor will teach Hindi to make sure that all students are literate. She also teaches the new incoming students to assess their ability. Teaching takes place in small groups and the tutor is always available to help with translation. White boards are used for classes and visual aids are used to provide the weekly educational workshops. Classes take place for 2-3 hours per day, 5 days per week. Most volunteers will take on 2 projects, teaching both sets of students in the same day, but still leaving time for preparation.
There are about 30 women and teenage girls in each of the 6 centres in Jodhpur, who have little or no education. The teenage girls may have dropped out of school to look after their siblings, or may not have attended at all. These centres help to provide a good general education, (in addition to basic English, Hindi and Maths), by providing 10 core workshops in a variety of topics, from Women’s Health and Nutrition to Politics and Geography. All these workshops (and more!) are on Google Drive, accessible on arrival to Sambhali. In addition volunteers are encouraged to provide a variety of extra workshops that they have expertise in eg Drama, Photography and specific medical knowledge. Workshops in basic computer skills are also given by volunteers (using a stock of donated laptops). Volunteers are expected to provide a monthly report on each centre as well as preparing monthly tests to monitor progress.
The students attend a 12-month course, the emphasis on providing them with a broad education including a vocational training in Sewing & Embroidery, so that they may go on to attend school after they leave or use their newly-acquired sewing skills at home to earn themselves an income, sewing garments for people in their community, for which business skills workshops are also provided. Our aim is to provide all those students who graduate with a sewing machine that they can use at home.
Primary Education Centres
There are 4 centres in Jodhpur with approximately 30-40 children (boys and girls) aged, 5-12 years old in each centre. These have been newly formed in March 2017. These centres have been established to teach to the children of the mothers’ who attend the empowerment centres and to extend this out to others. The aim to provide a basic education in Hindi, English and Maths to enable and encourage these children to go to school. They will be assessed after 12 months and depending on their age, ability and sponsorships available, applications will be made for them to attend school. For the very young children Art/craft and primary education workshops will also be given as well as general knowledge workshops to all on a weekly basis. Classes take place for 2 hours a day, 5 days per week.
Sheerni Educational Project (Boarding Home)
Sambhali Trust has 2 boarding homes for young girls who come from the rural desert area surrounding Setrawa, 110km west of Jodhpur. The aim is to provide these girls with a good education until 12th standard (final year at school) to enable them to reach their potential and have better opportunities. The girls generally return home during the school holidays.
This was established in May 2012 for 22 girls aged 6-15 years old. They live in a family-run boarding home and attend a good local school. Volunteers visit the girls for 3-4 hours every afternoon (Monday-Friday) to provide extra tuition in English and Maths, weekly educational workshops dependant on age (girls divided into 2 age groups) and sports/outdoor activities. Educational trips are encouraged once a month and volunteers accompany them on a 4-day trip provided each May.
Laadli Boarding Home
Newly-opened in April 2017, this accommodates 20 girls aged 6-12 years old and is near to the Sheerni Educational Project, the girls attending the same local school. The Housemother and cook live-in, whilst a tutor visits 6 days a week. Similarly to the Sheerni home, volunteers will provide extra tuition in English and Maths as well as workshops and sports activities. From April – July 2017, the girls are settling in to their new home, establishing a new routine, having medical check-ups, vaccinations and learning health and hygiene routines. The new term starts on 1 July after their summer holidays.
Sambhali Studio is the sewing centre for graduates who produce items for the Sambhali Boutique shop as well as manufacturing customised goods for overseas orders. Volunteers can help in 2 ways:
Sewing Centre Deputy Manager
Kavita Bihal is manager, with Govind Singh Rathore acting as overall director of the Sewing Centres. A deputy manager would help to assist Kavita in making sure the orders are distributed well to the graduates in both centres, looking after Quality Control and keeping to deadlines. Kavita is a professional sewing tutor and designs many of the products that customers order. Volunteers who are interested in this should be staying in Sambhali for at least 2 months.
Sambhali always likes to include new products in their Boutique range, so volunteers are encouraged to use their expertise to design new products with the materials available in Jodhpur. We have very limited financial resources for development, so volunteers do need to be aware to keep expenditure to a minimum whilst creating new ideas. There is studio space and electric sewing machines available to develop ideas.
Sambhali Boutique – Sunday shifts
We need volunteers to do the 2 Sunday shifts at the Boutique whilst our Sales Manager has a day off. The Boutique is open 10am-7pm and this can be divided into 2 shifts of 4.5 hours each. Not only do the volunteers get a chance to sell the items, but they have the opportunity to talk to customers from all over the world and can inform them more about Sambhali Trust and its projects.
Sambhali can have up to 15 - 20 volunteers at any one time and a co-ordinator is needed to help integrate each volunteer into Sambhali from arrival. They provide all the essential information about the practicalities of living in the guest house and in Jodhpur and briefing about all the projects available and visiting them in their orientation. Volunteer meetings are held weekly, which are taken by Govind, with the volunteer coordinator stepping in and assisting as required. The VC needs to be approachable and listen to any concerns that volunteers might have and liaise with Govind and management of the guest house as necessary. This can be a very demanding role at times, particularly in busy periods and so it is essential that this role is taken by somebody who is volunteering in Sambhali for at least 6 months to provide continuity and understands the mechanics of Sambhali and living in Jodhpur.
An administrative role would require the volunteer to have skills in Microsoft Word and Excel. Tasks can be varied depending on time of arrival, but can include PR, Fundraising, writing the monthly Sambhali Newsletter and updating Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, Blog, Instagram). As Sambhali is linked to the United Nations, by being provided with Special Consultative Status, we aim to participate by developing campaigns in Jodhpur in a variety of topics surrounding women’s empowerment (eg End violence towards women) at least on a yearly basis. Volunteers in this role would help to organise these campaigns. This role can also be combined with a teaching role.
No Bad Touch Project
This project, provides workshops to children, teachers and parents in local schools and colleges regarding the prevention of sexual abuse in children. This project has been running since early 2014 and the workshop has been developed with the help of a local psychologist, Dr Reena Bhansali, Smile Junction with Sambhali interns who were studying psychology at university. A workshop has been created which includes a puppet play, short film and seminar. The aim is to provide 8 workshops per month plus 2 workshops for parents and teachers. This is proving a very successful project, reaching over 3000 children per year, so bringing awareness to children and families throughout Jodhpur. Each workshop is taken by Vimlesh Solanki a Sambhali staff member, who has been leading these workshops from the beginning. This role would be suited to someone who would be open to speak about this topic and also has the confidence to speak infront of an audience.
Aadarsh Project (Save Youth/Save Nation)
The Aadarsh Programme was designed 2019 to educate adolescent boys and girls in schools in Jodhpur about several issues that arise in puberty. It has been initiated in the Sambhali Trust‘s own projects and centres. Topics such as the sexual organs and body changes including menstruation are often not covered properly in the school curriculum, so we feel it is of even greater importance to talk about this multifaceted topic with as many adolescents as possible. Aadarsh Project Sexual harassment and abuse as well as the dangers of the Internet are also addressed in separate lessons, aiming at educating the girls about appropriate behaviour in such vulnerable settings and situations. The first Aadarsh lesson was given at Sheerni Boarding Home in February 2019, another was held shortly afterwards in Jodhpur Empowerment Centre, which focused more on sex education.
Sambhali Trust will assist volunteers with finding accomodation. Please discuss details when applying to volunteer.
For all work roles, it is recommended that you bring the following items with you:
- Laptop - lesson preparation, reports, admin etc.
- A few ‘nice’ outfits for events
- If you would like to bring gifts teaching materials, books, games, stationary or small toys, they are all appreciated, although it is possible to buy things like this in Jodhpur.
Clothes: don’t worry about buying ‘Indian’ clothes before hand - there will be someone who can help you look for things here in Jodhpur at very low prices.
As a general note, girls are required to dress more conservatively, and therefore packing clothes that cover shoulders, legs and torso would help.
In order for the girls to have continuity and to ensure that your work can ammend to something and really make a difference you should at least plan on spending two months with the Trust.
With any further questions, please feel free to approach founder of Sambhali Trust Mr. Govind Singh Rathore: firstname.lastname@example.org