Kolkata Mary Ward Social Centre and Human Rights Day (UDHR ) 75

Human Rights Day blog by Kolkata Mary Ward Social Centre

In 2023 with the support from Misean Cara the Kolkata Mary Ward Social Centre (KMWSC), a partner of Misean Cara member Loreto Sisters, is working on Human rights for the marginalised community in 10 villages in West Bengal India. The project focuses on enshrining the rights of all human beings, to live without discrimination, and try to connect each of the beneficiaries under the project with the national and local laws and policies of the state and centre Government of India.

Learn more about the Kolkata Mary Ward Social Centre here.

The beneficiaries who participate in the KMWSC project come from economically vulnerable backgrounds where there is a huge gap in awareness of basic rights of the people, especially for women, children and differently able (I.e. people with disabilities). Within the society they live in, roles and rights of every person are divided along gender and economic lines. For many people, human rights are a luxury not fully enjoyed by all.

Opportunities created due by the project

  • With the project implementation, we are creating one-on-one awareness and mass awareness with the people on Human Rights, Child Rights laws and policies in place.
  • The project acts as the thread between the beneficiaries and the national and local laws and policies in place best suitable for them as a part of projects key activities.
  • In cases of rights violations, the project focuses on addressing the issue on a case-by-case basis with local law enforcement.   
  • Supporting beneficiaries to create proper required documentation to avail government policies and schemes

Challenges

  • It is difficult to change the mindset of people who lack awareness of their basic rights, and build up the confidence and skills to then take action on its violation
  • Intervention of cases at the field level can create security threats for the project team, which must be dealt with through effective networking with government stakeholders, law enforcement and local community
  • Government processes are very lengthy, require difficult to obtain documentation and can lead to difficulties connecting beneficiaries with their rights.

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