New Day Visit to Sharana, India – March 7 and 8

Visiting the Sharana night shelter outside Pondicherry.

On March 7 and 8, 2013 New Day members Shannon Rogers, Paula Marriott, Catherine Copping and Liza Green traveled to Pondicherry in Tamil Nadu province to visit the Sharana project.

New Day has been funding Sharana (previously Kalki) since 2008.  Our funding has focused on the Girls’ Program led by social worker Amala Devi.  This program works with girls living on the streets or slums of Pondicherry to bring them into the various Sharana programs including the Drop In Center and Night Shelter where they receive counseling, education enrichment, nutrition and care.  The Girls’ program also runs workshops and conducts out reach visits into the communities where these girls live.

Young girls from the Girls' Program

During the visit New Day members also had the opportunity to learn more about other programs run by Sharana in Pondicherry and the surrounding areas including a carpentry training program for boys and a microcredit program for village women.

New Day member Paula Marriott at the Sharana Drop In Center

You can read the report from Sharana for the grant year 2012-2013 here: 2012-2013 GirlsProgramReport


Update on Sharana Girls Program (formerly Kalki), June 2012

Kalki Welfare Society merged with Sharana in January 2012 due to difficulties with the Indian Inland Revenue department around receiving foreign donations.  Sharana has been a partner of Kalki in Pondicherry for a long time and is an established NGO in the town, working with street children in prevention and education programs.  Sharana absorbed all of Kalki’s staff and programs and New Day is happy to continue our support of the work they are doing helping street-living girls to find as brighter future.  Over the past 4 years, New Day has funded both the Girls’ program and Night Shelter.  You can read some of the highlights of these programs below and in more detail here, Program for Adolescent Girls and Centre for Children at Risk – June 2011- May 2012:
– Night Shelter home to 43 girls over past year
– 284 girls enrolled in the broader Girls’ Programme
– 114 girls assisted to find a job over past year in shops, offices, manufacturing
– 3 girls referred for nursing training (2 year course)
– Life skills workshops for adolescent girls in public schools to start in August 2012
– 2012-2013 grant will fund the Girls Program
In June 2012, New Day made a grant of HK$85,550 to Sharana for the continued support of their Girls’ Program.  This grant will cover the costs of the established education, life skills and job placement programme as well as the expansion of this programme into public high schools in Pondicherry.  It will also fund the establishment and running of a half-way house where graduates of the program who are not yet ready to be fully independent can live and be cared for while they study and/or start new jobs.  You can read in detail about the Girl’s Program here:

Kalki Girls Centre and Girls Programme update – September 2011

Girls at the Kalki Girls Centre

New Day is funding the 2011/2012 budget for the Kalki Girls Centre and Girls Programme in Pondicherry, India.  The program continues to progress from strength to strength. The number of girls Kalki is able to help (through activities, medical care, access to social workers, education etc) only continues to increase.  This is especially true during the rainy season and the summer holidays.

Girls Centre: Currently 18 girls live at the shelter (with 16 having received temporary shelter during the summer months) and a further 175 are being helped through outreach work in the streets and slums where they live with their families.

Girls Programme: Medical camps in partnership with two local hospitals were run over the summer, reaching over 80 girls.  An ad hoc medical camp for young mothers and their babies helped 44 women and their children to receive a free check-up and follow-on medication.  The Kalki tuition programme has recently started for the academic year with 97 girls from grade 6 to grade 12 enrolled.  Career Orientation workshops conducted during the year have resulted in the placement of 31 girls in local businesses since June: supermarkets, boutiques, shops and various offices.

We are delighted that Kalki is developing in such a steady and exciting way.  They have the staff and the programmes in place to continue to run successfully into the future and New Day is pleased to support their Girls Centre and Girls Programme.

See the comprehensive update from Kalki themselves of all their activities at the following link: Girls Program – 3 Months Report to AugustAC

New Day Site Visit to KALKI – 3rd and 4th of September 2009

New Day members Chris and Liza Green visited KALKI and met with Panjali and her staff.  They visited the Drop-In Center and the new night shelter (‘Girls Center’).   For photos and details of the visit have a look at this slide show: KALKI pres to members Oct 09

You can read the site visit report prepared for Linklaters here: ND Visit to KALKI

KALKI Training Program – Funding Approved!

The New Day Working Committee has approved a request from KALKI to co-fund their new training initiative along with ADM Capital Foundation.  KALKI is seeking USD25,602 to set-up and run a comprehensive training program involving both educational support for girls attending school and vocational training.  The program will be run out of the Night Shelter premises.  New Day will donate USD13,000 to KALKI in June 2009 for their Training Program.

Please have a look at the funding request proposal for all the details of the program and its budget: KALKI Proposal for New Day

FUNDED! KALKI Night Shelter – Pondicherry, India

Street girls at KALKI Drop-in Center
Street girls at KALKI Drop-in Center

Around 150 girl children and adolescents live in the streets of central Pondicherry, at constant risk of sexual abuse and trafficking. Another 250 live in the city’s slums with no privacy and often at risk of being abused by relatives or neighbours.

Piloting a new approach, in June 2008 KALKI Welfare Association opened a Drop-In Centre for street children in Pondicherry, India. The facility is a community space with an accessible full-range of services. KALKI offers home-cooked food, clean, secure shelter, health services, remedial education and recreational activities.  KALKI is the vision and work of Panjali who herself grew up in the slums of Pondicherry and found an escape route through an informal education offered by NGO’s and then a career working for them.Panjali – on the left – the founder of KALKI


Panjali - on the left - the founder of KALKI

Panjali – on the left – the founder of KALKI

To avoid abuse and nights on the streets and in brothels a number of girls are currently sleeping at the Drop-In center.  To better cater to these girls and others at immediate risk of abuse, KALKI plans to set up a safe night shelter. This shelter will operate as a transitional house where girls can live for up to one year, while socialorkers help them plan for their future.  Girls will access the education program at KALKI, while older ones will be supported in vocational training activities. All will receive medical care and counseling. In some cases girls can be referred to extended families or to long-term residential homes when they have been abandoned and a safe placement within their extended family cannot be guaranteed.  The night shelter will be located outside Pondicherry, in order to ensure the safety of the girls and avoid relatives claiming them back from KALKI in order to exploit and traffic them – this is at the moment a serious problem since the drop-in centre is located in the centre of town.

The total budget for the running of the Night Shelter for 1 year is US$19,946.  This includes rent, food, medical supplies, furniture, utilities and salaries.  ADM Capital Foundation is heavily invested in all aspects of the KALKI project and will be monitoring the roll-out of the project alongside New Day.  Panjali is finalising the premises for the shelter and it should be operational in April 2009.  Thank you to ADM Capital Foundation for their support!

You can download the presentation on KALKI to members here KALKI Night Shelter-ppt