Women are one of the weakest sections in the society, socially, politically as well as economically. Many of the departments and intervention areas of TSSS has women as their cross-cutting section. Currently, TSSS is running two projects to build Gender Equity through Social, Political and Economic Empowerment. Apart from that socio-economic empowerment of the women are carried out through Self Help Groups and Income Generation Programmes. Fish vending women are also a major concern of TSSS. Although TSSS implements some socio-economic health-related activities for them, much of them are carried out through Fisheries ministry (link). TSSS has a very long history of working with women, taking a lot of efforts to make a progressive leadership among women through its sustainable developmental programmes. At present with the collaboration of Calcutta Ondoan and Sakhi-Women Resource Centre TSSS has taken new areas of women empowerment focusing on the social, political and economic upliftment of women in the coastal belts of Trivandrum by implementing a project named “Building Gender Equity Through Social, Political And Economic Empowerment From An Eco-feminist Perspective” within the regions of Puthukurichy & Anjengo.
Building Gender Equity
The major goals of the project are to strengthen the empowerment process of socio-economic & political development of 3,919 impoverished women in the coastal areas of Puthukurichy & Anjengo and also to reduce the gender-based violence in these coastal belts and to ensure a better and sustainable environment. One of the major focuses is to collaborate with the local self-governments in these project areas to strengthen the public in strategic matters of gender from an eco-feminist perspective. It also focuses on various eco-friendly income generation programmes. Awareness classes on various subjects to adolescent groups, training on street theatres, strengthening fish vending women forums through classes and economic activities are also some of the attractions of this project. The political empowerment of the women were carried out through political leadership and orientation programmes, training for Elected Representatives from Local Self Governments, Formation and Strengthening of Vigilance Committees.
Children are the future of the society. They are also one of the target groups of TSSS. Various activities are conducted for them through various programmes under other sections of TSSS, like Mother and Child Health, Non-formal and Vocational education. Other than that Child protection and promotion activities are carried out through Child Parliament and Childline. (link) TSSS is one of the collab organizations in Trivandrum working in partnership with Childline India Foundation, assisted by the Social Welfare Department.
The parliament ensures the leadership skills of each member. There are 48 child parliaments in our regions. The parliament meetings are held monthly in each parish. Mock Parliaments are conducted twice in a month in different regions. Through the mock Parliament, the children learn about the functions of Parliament. They become aware of the social issues around them get the opportunity to and build their leadership. Along with sports, games and arts children are given value education too. They are also given awareness on protection of children, health and issues of monsoon season, traffic rules, lifestyle diseases, drugs, Childline services and leadership skills.
Childline (link) is a 24-hour emergency outreach service for children in need of care and protection. Any child/ concerned adult can dial 1098 to access this service. This model of service was initiated as a field action project of the Department of Family and Child Welfare, Tata Institute of Social Sciences Mumbai, in June 1996. This was in response to a situation marked by the lack of an emergency service for children, restricted outreach of existing organizations and the ad hoc role of allied systems in child protection.
Childline is a partnership between children, the Government, NGOs, academic organizations and the community, at the city and national levels, to respond to the concerns of marginalized groups of children. To build a protective environment for children at community level TSSS Collab working with 5 Panchayaths in Trivandrum (Aruvikkara, Elakamon, Vempayam, Edava and Karakulam Panchayats). The main objective of the plan is strengthening of Panchayath Level Child Protection Committees. This helps to address child protection and the issues connected to that. It is being strengthened at the grassroots level through formation of Village Level Child Protection Committees (VLCPC) in the district.