Adhunika Women’s Centre

In April 2012, SAJIDA Foundation took over the management of Adhunika Women’s Center, an initiative by the US-based NGO, Adhunika Foundation. Adhunika Women’s Center is dedicated to positively impacting the lives of women by empowering them in their communities. Initiatives include a suite of training and educational modules, and awareness raising activities and facilities, all of which enhance participant knowledge and skill sets. Activities at the Center include:

Computer Training

Cyber Cafe Service

The Cyber Cafe Facility at Adhunika Women’s Center is accessible to women at a nominal fee. It ensures a safe and female-friendly environment for internet usage.

Education and Career Counseling

The Center hosts personalized education and career counseling sessions for female college students. These talks are typically organized on campus grounds.

Health Awareness

The Center regularly organizes female-centric health awareness forums which may be attended for a nominal fee. These conferences are supervised by medical specialists from SAJIDA Foundation hospitals. Topics range from reproductive health issues to breast and cervical cancer education. Cancer awareness programs are also arranged at different women’s colleges and hostels.

Medical Consultation

The Center offers free medical consultations by a female doctor once a week. This can be accessed by women conscripted to the Center’s computer training course.

Psychosocial Counseling

Understanding the importance of good mental health, under the auspices of SAJIDA Foundation’s Psychosocial Counseling Center, the Center organizes counseling sessions for Adhunika students and women from the community. In these gatherings, the topics covered range from stress and anger management to parent-child relationship workshops. With mentorship from the Psychosocial Counseling Center, the Adhunika Women’s Center chooses groups of ten women to train to extend para-counseling services to other community females. These sessions are focused on uncovering how to manage low stress lives and handle family affairs with diplomacy.

Legal Awareness

Women face significant challenges in the form of domestic violence, sexual harassment, dowry demands, etc. These may or may not involve close family members. The Center organizes legal awareness presentations to introduce females to their legal rights. The reviews are organized for Center students and are conducted by a SAJIDA Foundation lawyer.

English Speaking Ability Enhancement through Skype

In Bangladesh, basic communication skills in English are poor for the most part. Female students, especially those from impoverished families, lag behind in communicating with their counterparts. Their deficiencies are mainly in functional English. A little knowledge of conversational English can go a long way in building confidence and optimizing social interactions. As a result, the Adhunika Women’s Center wired together this virtual intervention to develop and strengthen communication skills in English. The platform invites English speaking volunteers living oversees to host conversational English classes using Skype applications. The aim of the multimedia program is to help students develop better communication skills, and build their self-confidence and sense of worth. An ancillary bonus is that the network, patched together with mostly US based volunteers, proves valuable in many other Adhunika capacities.

Standard English Language Course:

The Center has also undertaken a pilot project to improve writing skills of the students by engaging volunteers. A retired English Teacher conducts voluntary lessons on a regular basis with groups of four-five females at her residence.

Scholarship Support:

To increase higher education opportunities for women, Adhunika Women’s Center provides scholarships to women that excel academically but are unable to fund their own educations.

Support from Adhunika Junior:

Adhunika Jr. was created by a team of volunteers in the USA to collect finances for school supplies needed by the Amrao Manush daycare center. This daycare utility permits working mothers to entrust their children (aged two-six) to a safe environment while they seek waged employment. The Center also arranges schooling for street children (aged six plus). The majority of the funds raised for the center are obtained from fundraisers involving merchandise sales and refreshment. Currently, Adhunika Jr. is focused on twenty-three children who lack a fixed address. Adhunika Jr. is attempting to finance their education for $200 dollars annually. In the future, the concern intends to widen its focus to associated efforts, such as acquiring temporary shelters for more children. Adhunika Jr. was started by Mr. Sid S. Yousuf following his visit to a SAJIDA Pavement Dweller Center. There he spoke with a ten year old boy named Nasim who was studying in the third grade. Mr. Yousuf was inspired by the conversation: Nasim had voiced a determination to complete his studies and move his family off the streets. Mr. Yousuf subsequently created Adhunika Junior. Initially launched with eleven volunteers, Adhunika Jr.’s first fundraising event raised over $650. Adhunika Jr. is now actively working to create awareness and secure resources for the daycare center affiliated with the Amrao Manush Project. In doing so, it hopes to lighten the loads of disadvantaged children.