Breaking all the existing differences through SHG: Premraji

Premraji, member of Jai Maa Durga Self-Help Group from Karpiya village of Musafirkhana block in  Amethi is among those confident women in the group, who have felt a sense of belongingness to the SHG and would never want to leave it and this attachment with the group has grown over the years. She is from Scheduled Caste community and discrimination was a normal course of life for her earlier.

‘It was not only the discrimination from society but also at household, we were under purdah (veil) and were restrained from even going to another village’ Premraji mentioned. It was difficult for Premraji to join the group initially.

‘ More than joining the group, I was scared of taking loans as the fear of moneylender was so much ingrained in initial days,  that we felt that same would happen if I take a loan from SHG ’.  But for Premraji, this was just an unrealistic fear and she mentioned that SHG not only taught her to be fearless but also to be loyal.

‘We know now the importance of livelihoods and we invest the loans in most of the livelihoods activities ’, Premraji said. Premraji’s agricultural land was on collateral and she released it by taking a loan of Rs. 10,000 twice from her SHG. She has taken loans several times. She took a loan of Rs. 10,000 for buying a cow which has now become a consistent source of income. She also took a loan of Rs. 25,000 for repairing her house and has taken loans on several occasions for her children’s education. All her sons are working now and her youngest daughter is a member of the Young Women Self-Help Group.

‘We have broken all the barriers, our SHG has broken all the existing differences, we interact and share feelings and we want our young girls to be more confident through Young Women Self-Help Group.’ Premraji mentioned with a smile on her face.

-Alokita, January 2019