1. Teeji Bai
“Never Give Up”
“Coming from a backward area, I live in a place which is not easily accessible. One has to walk uphill and trek for kilometers to reach my place. Surviving in such a place was a tough thing for me, leave alone earning. I came to know about the training through mobilization conducted by Jovaki. Jovaki has certainly changed my life. I am now able to buy clothes and sweets for my family and my kids. My father is proud of me. I have even encouraged my sister, sisters-in-law, and other tribal women to join Jovaki and be a confident version of themselves.” Quotes Teeji Bai.
Coming from the Garasiya community of the Udaipur tribal area, Teeji Bai did not have an easy life. Being raised in a remote area with no connectivity, she could not also study pertaining early marriage. Things got worse after her husband left her alone with two kids. Being unemployed, the only source of income for her was a random collection of custard apples, sold in a particular month of the year. Without proper knowledge of how to pluck fruits, much of her collection was wasted. This allowed her to make only Rs.15000 per season, which was very insufficient for a family of 6 people including two kids.
From traveling miles for meeting the ends to buying herself and her family new clothes and spending on daily requirements, Teeji Bai has surely come a long way. Today she is a dedicated employee of Jovaki earning approximately Rs. 30000 annually.
Today, she makes around Rs. 250 per crate (earlier Rs.150 per crate). All this was made possible with the help of Jovaki’s intervention in her life. She was provided with ‘crates’ and ‘fruit cutting secateurs’ to earn herself and her family a sustainable livelihood income which is all year long. Jovaki also trained her on how and when to skillfully pluck fruits without any wastage. Apart from plucking, she is also working very hard to process the pulp at the processing unit and inspiring other tribal women to join the family.
2. Leela Bai
“The basic attribute of the mankind is to look after each other”
Life is not easy for everyone. Some people have to work very hard to just survive. Yes, there are people like Leela Bai who work very hard to earn bread and butter for their families. Coming from a socially backward society, she got married at an early age compromising her education. Well, this is not enough. She lost her husband due to silicosis at a very young age by working at a marble factory. This incident rendered her alone to take care of her three children (one son and two daughters).
For the sake of her children and to make ends meet, she used to travel miles to sell custard apples at a very throwaway price pertaining to low bargaining skills. The income too was not fixed and the leftover fruits were wasted in high quantities. This is when she came to know about Jovaki through mobilization conducted by ICICI RSETI.
Jovaki proved to be a ‘real-time jugnu’ for Leela and her family. She now earns Rs. 30000 annually. To promote skilled plucking, she was supplied with ‘crates’ and ‘secateurs’ to help her pluck the fruits at the right time. Earlier she and other women plucked fruits without prior knowledge of the right time. Jovaki taught them the right time to pluck fruits to avoid wastage. Women like Leela Bai are a true example of sheer determination and hard work. From living in an extremely remote location to now buying things for her family, the journey of Leela Bai is truly inspiring.