When I began to share my experience with my classmates, I learned that there were many girls being harassed in a similar way or worse but they chose to remain quiet. I refused to be quiet. I learned all about puberty and adolescence and then on November 14th, 2014 I got permission from my school headmaster and made a presentation to 400 of my school girls.
I was featured in the newspaper and then many schools started to invite me. My friends and I would carry the entire audio-visual system to various schools to make the same presentation to empower young girls on puberty and adolescence. Before we realized, we reached out to more than 1000 girls.
Just about the same time, there was a news article declaring the Vellore district as the worst affected district in the entire state of Tamilnadu for Child Sexual Abuse. I was distressed beyond belief. During my presentations, I observed that girls seem to learn more on this subject when there were no adults around. When I shared this observation with the Director of the Hope House where I was studying then, he combined all these together (my personal experience, district's dubious distinction, and my observation) to come up with a program called "Project YUVA" (Project for the Youngsters to Understand & Verbalize Adolescence).
Project YUVA is intended to reach out to the entire district in the next five years and I am helping out as an ambassador by spreading the word around to raise resources for Project YUVA.
It is my hope that every child in our district is empowered adequately enough to protect their own dignity but for that to happen, Project YUVA needs resources to take this program forward. Would you like to help? Empowering one child requires Rs. 150/-.