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I am pledging my birthday to help ex-Devadasi women start independent businesses

About the campaign

Mahananda is a 34-year-old survivor of the Devadasi (meaning: ‘servant of God’) system. This ancient practice involved dedicating a girl, as young as 5-6 years of age, to the temple Goddess. She would spend her life serving the temple and was not allowed to marry anyone. The system was abused by the rich and powerful who forced young Devadasis to sleep with them. Over years, Devadasis were reduced to being incorrectly termed 'temple prostitutes'. Mahananda escaped from the system with support from MASS, our field partner. A single mother, she started a tailoring business of her own ,ensured that her two daughters get a good education and is truly empowered.

MASS provides financial support to former Devadasi women like Mahananda to start small businesses like tailoring, rearing livestock, and running small shops. These businesses help pay their children’s school fees, save for their old age, and generate jobs for their families. Education and a secure environment will offer their children a better future, help them integrate back i

Who we are helping

Nilavva Balappa Kamble

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