Shadhika Shadika

The Groundswell

“Because of Shadhika, I could study and become independent. I now have a voice and can freely speak.”

–Razia, young woman of Shadhika

“Just as a boat cannot cross the river by being afraid of waves, people who work hard will never be defeated.”

– Pooja, Shadhika Scholar

What is the Groundswell?

/groun(d) swell/
noun

1. A build-up of opinion or feeling in a large section of the population.
2. A large or extensive swell of the ocean caused by a distant gale or seismic disturbance.

We believe the Groundswell starts when a young woman is empowered to make her own decisions, choose her own life, and stand up for her rights. When she is empowered, she passes it on to those around her, creating a ripple effect in the lives of other girls, their families, and their communities. For every 1 young woman Shadhika supports, she empowers, on average, at least 14 others. To be strong. To be powerful. To be change. Together they are creating a groundswell of change across India.

Components of the Groundswell

On average, every young woman who receives a scholarship helps 14 more escape child marriage, access education, and increase her freedom of mobility.

Supports for Success

We provide grants to local, women-led nonprofits to carry out after-school programming for girls from 10 to 18. As part of this program, girls learn about their rights and carry out community projects to advance their rights. They also receive educational support to help them stay in school until Class 12 and escape early, forced marriage.

Shadhika Scholars

Shadhika provides college and vocational scholarships to young women who have demonstrated leadership on girls’ rights issues under our Supports for Success program. In addition to full tuition support, recipients receive English tutoring, computer classes, a laptop, and job readiness training. As part of the scholarship, recipients carry out a community project to advance girls’ rights during their school year.

Leaders for Change Summit

Each year, Shadhika hosts Scholars from across India for a four-day summit to learn new leadership skills and collaborate on their community projects. Meeting in teams based on their project focus (i.e. child marriage, right to education, sexual harassment, etc.), these young leaders share best practices, brainstorm on potential actions, and support each other to advance their cause. Through the summit, these young women leaders are building a supportive network to advance girls’ rights in India.

Alumnae Network

After graduation, these young women leaders take a pledge to continue to “pay it forward” and mentor the next generation of girl leaders. Meeting annually, alumnae serve as advisors to Shadhika, helping us to improve our efforts in India.