When a group of women recognised that not enough was being done to locate victims of the Kerala floods, they mobilised together. The women scoured social media looking for messages from stranded people, verified their locations and coordinated with rescue operations, saving over 6,000 people.
Namita, who was a part of these efforts says: “When our campaign was over, we sat back, opened a spreadsheet and tallied the number of people we had reached out to… To be a part of this amazing setup, where we all feed off each other’s energy, inspire each other, motivate and help each other in succeeding.”
This group of inspiring women didn’t come together by chance. We had been working to build this community of women for six months before the Kerala floors. The She Creates Change programme brings together over 100 women to build their skills, amplify their campaigns and connect as a community.
Early on, we realised that a community of women that encourages diverse types of leadership will be more likely to build huge impact.
As the group of women grew to over 100, we started to see different leadership roles emerge:
- Social Change ‘Champions’ – These women run strong national campaigns. Like Srilekha, who champions rural women’s rights in the tribal Jharkhand region and is running a campaign to secure menstrual hygiene services for young girls. Women like Srilekha provide inspiration and motivation to the group.
- Community Leaders – These women don’t lead a specific campaign, but organise and offer leadership to the community. For example, Namita encourages women to start campaigns and connects them to supportive buddies. She also helps to mobilise support for the right campaign at the right time.
- Experts – They provide expert guidance on key strategic skills. For example, lawyer Sagina provides legal advice to campaigns that are looking for the right policy ask.
The women in this community choose different learning pathways depending on the role they identify for themselves. Which means everyone feels like they can contribute to a positive, growing community of women making a huge impact in India.