From struggles to empowerment: Kavita’s story with PashooPakshee

Kavita dreamt of having a happy family but her marriage turned out to be a source of struggles and the couple got divorced. When she joined PashooPakshee, a social enterprise that sells wildlife-inspired souvenirs handmade by women, everything changed for the better.

Kavita told her story to the Women on Wings’ team that visited the PashooPakshee center in Panna, in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, to work with the PashooPakshee team on structuring its financials.

Kavita’s story – from struggles to dignity
Kavita’s married life has not been easy. She got married when she was young and was both scared and excited. She does not exactly remember, but she must have been around 15 to 17 years old. Kavita says: “My husband did not work, and I did not know how to make ends meet. It was tough and humiliating living with him and my in-laws.” Kavita and her children now live with her married brother.

“My life was bleak after my separation, and I could foresee no future for myself and my kids,” she adds.

PashooPakshee – a social enterprise for rural women
Luckily, she was offered a job by the local coordinator of the PashooPakshee center when he came to her village in 2021. It changed her life completely.

“I have become so independent,” she says proudly. “I was shy, would not speak with anyone outside my family. Now I come to the center on my own, meet and interact with everyone there, and even with visitors.”

Even her clothing has changed from saris to the more comfortable salwar suits. With so many women working now, it is changing gender dynamics in the village. According to Kavita some men and in-laws also help with household chores now.

Woman empowerment through a job
Kavita aspires to get a good education for her children to help them obtain professional jobs. Thanks to employment with PashooPakshee, Kavita can now afford to take care of her children and save for their better future.

She adds: “My children are so happy and proud that their mother earns money. Now I can afford to buy things for them without asking my brother for money. I feel respected by my family. I can dream of a future for us, a life of dignity.”

By supporting social enterprises like PashooPakshee, Women on Wings can empower women like Kavita to achieve their dreams and live a life of hope and dignity.

Image | Kavita at work