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regular-article-logo Thursday, 25 July 2024

North Bengal University students reach out to tea garden women to work for their education and economic uplift

Initiative, taken in association with NGO Duhita and arts and crafts store Pannchi would continue in coming days

Binita Paul Siliguri Published 01.06.23, 06:16 AM
Mass communication students of NBU at the campaign at the Azamabad tea estate in Naxalbari

Mass communication students of NBU at the campaign at the Azamabad tea estate in Naxalbari

The department of mass communication of North Bengal University (NBU) has engaged its students to reach out to women in the Terai tea belt and work for their education and economic uplift.

As a part of the community outreach, students of the fourth semester were sent to Azamabad tea estate in Naxalbari block of Siliguri subdivision last Sunday.

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“Under the initiative, students were instructed to approach women in the garden and campaign among them so that they can explore alternative earning opportunities and learn the values of basic education, vocational skills, health, and hygiene,” said Deepan Chattopadhyay, a faculty member at the department.

He said that the initiative, taken in association with NGO Duhita and arts and crafts store Pannchi would continue in the coming days.

“We want the students to hone their public relations skills through the campaign. Simultaneously, the rural women will know about health, hygiene and sustainable livelihoods,” the faculty member added.

Victoria Rahman, the founder of Pannchi, mentored a workshop during the campaign where women were taught to make different products. Around 23 women were taught skills like DIY crafts, stitching, knitting, bamboo work and woodwork.

“This can be an alternative source of income for women living in tea gardens. We can provide them with raw materials for them to make handmade jewellery, mandalas, earrings, and other items. For example, if anyone makes an anklet, we will pay Rs 20 per piece and promote the product through our website,” said Victoria.

Neel Bhattacharjee, a student, said they performed a skit to spread awareness on various issues.

“We had one-on-one conversations with women residents where we briefed them about various options on how they can become economically self-reliant,” the student said.

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