The Butterfly Project’s work in Sundar Nagri came to a close on 28th March, 2019. Through a community meeting, young women leaders (YWLs) who had conducted safety audits of their neighborhoods, shared the audit findings with community members and recommended ways to make their neighborhood safer. The safety audit included public spaces like parks, public toilets, and local markets.
TYPF started The Butterfly Project in Sundar Nagri, a community based in Delhi by partnering with SEWA BHARAT in 2017 to build leadership capacities of 50 adolescent and young girls. In January 2018, TYPF started direct intervention in Sundar Nagri, and introduced the Safety Pin App and facilitated its use in conducting safety audits in the community with a cohort of 16 YWLs who shared their interest to continue their engagement on issues of safety and violence within their community.
Stakeholders who use, frequent, and manage these spaces were also a part of the dialogue. In addition to YWLs’ family members and other community members, the event was also attended by policemen from Sundar Nagri police station, one supervisor of public toilets from Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board, a counselor from Municipal Corporation of Delhi, and the Nigam Parshad.
The half day community event provided a space for the YWLs to share their journeys, experiences and recommendations to ensure safe spaces and prevent eve-teasing in public places such as MCS parks. Other recommendations were:
The MCD councilor should allocate 2 parks for women and girls where they can gather and play without being teased
The Local police should frequently patrol the specific streets where groups of men gather and tease girls on their way to school
DUSIB should provide 24/7 toilet facilities for women and girls
The Supervisor must ensure cleanliness in toilets and through provision of a pad/cotton disposal bin, clean water and adequate lighting
said Varsha, a young woman leader from the programme emphasizing on how there is only attention paid to communities such as Sundar Nagri only to gather votes from its residents.
Working with the young women leaders to address these issues not only increased their capacities to conduct an audit, but also brought out issues that are often ignored in front of the entire community.