My last and final project with MSS took place in the first week of December. I planned to have a policy meeting with the women who worked at the center located in Mehrangarh Fort. This project would help them establish policies specifically for their center in order to maintain structure and sustainability. The first stage of this project was to discuss with the women which policies they thought were important enough to write formally on a poster to hang in the center. This discussion included me, the founder of MSS, the women from the Fort Center and the IHD director who helped me to translate and facilitate the meeting. The second stage was printing policies using a clear and concise design for better understanding. And the last stage was presenting these policies to the women and actually hanging them in the Fort Center so they could be visible to all.
I was really happy about how productive this meeting was, and how empowering it was for the women. They had so much to say in their decision process of the policies. Furthermore, I thought it was fantastic to see some of the women question and discuss what they thought were the most fair policies with the founder of the organization. This healthy and neccessary discussion will hopefully offer sustainability and consistency within the MSS organization. Maybe it will even help them handle future disputes. Overall it was a great way to finish my time with the organization, and I was proud of the community involvement. By following IHD’s community development model and my own personal values of how sustainable projects in community development should be mobilizing, and empowering tasks; this project was a great success for MSS and for myself!
I will always remember these five months in the blue city, because I had the experience of a life time in India. I learned so much about
myself and I have changed my outlook on many things after living in India. But most of all, I feel lucky to have met the people I did, and it would not have been possible to see as many places or learn so much without having met these people.
I feel extremely attached to India now, and I will never forget the time I spent here or the people I spent it with. Thank you, India, for opening your arms and accepting me into your complex but beautfiul culture. I feel blessed just to be a part of it for such a short time. And surely I will come back!