SKZ Foundation

Living in our houses sleeping peacefully under the shelter with the feeling of being in a safe place, we can never understand how the people without shelter survive. They are vulnerable to the extreme weather conditions to any predator out there. Life is uncertain and you don’t know when you will have to move someplace else leaving your current life. It is more difficult than you think it is.

More than 40% of the urban citizens in Pakistan live in slums. So , the development of country is not possible without their progress and for that Empowering women in slums is a crucial part. Women empowerment has always been an issue in the developing countries. But when you are in slums, when the living situations are worse than anywhere else, this issue is always neglected. Men are the earners and women are oppressed. This is mostly because they are never allowed to learn and explore the world and don’t have equal opportunities. From day one, they are taught to obey men, sit at home or do whatever they are told to.

Problems faced by Women in Slums:

Saya E Khuda E Zuljlal is working for women’s empowerment in slums for years now and we are slowly and steadily progressing towards our mission. Empowering women in slums is one of the main purposes and the mission of our organization. Because, we hope for the slum dwellers to progress and it isn’t possible without their women being on the pedestal. Here are some steps that should be taken in the process of Empowering women in slums, and how SKZ is playing its role in that.

The first and foremost step in changing the mindset is counselling. The women need to know what they deserve. They need to know what exploitation is and how are they being exploited every day without them realizing it. Fighting for your rights requires you to know what your rights are. Counselling them is to make them realize their worth and SKZ has been doing it through its counselling sessions. There are the following points to tackle while counselling:

The negative thoughts and the inferiority complex of considering them as third-class women are the huge hindrance in their way to growth. For shutting that down, counselling plays an important role. Guiding them about the worth of women in Islam and society to let them know their worth.

The lack of confidence lead women nowhere. When they are confident and believe in themselves, they can conquer the world. Their confidence can be boosted by telling them the success stories of the women and telling them if those women can make it, they can too. Keeping them motivated and making them believe in themselves is all they would need. Once they are confident, they will find ways to excel.

Once the women are ready to do something productive and be empowered, the next step is to teach them, HOW? If they have any skill, we can teach them how to enhance it and make use of it. If they don’t know any skill that can earn them money, we can always teach them. The skill centres can teach them the skills like stitching, cooking, embroidery and many more to become independent. They can learn how to deal with people in the market and how to sell their work properly.

After they have learned the skills, they need to find opportunities. They need opportunities to present to the world what they got and how their skills are going to help people. For this, opportunities should be created for them by the government so they can find and grab them. The lack of opportunities in the market is one of the hurdles in progress but once you have skills, you will eventually get there and make your way to the top. They should be helped in running their small-scale businesses with loans and aid so that they can excel.
A strong and independent woman will be a change maker, she will change the generations and will raise confident daughters who will raise the confident generation further and this is how nations progress. Saya E Khuda E Zuljlal will keep fighting for the rights of women and their empowerment till the end. We dream of a prosperous and progressive nation, and empowering women in slums is a great step towards it. Together we aim to build a nation where every child goes to school, every women is empowered and has the right to have equal access towards every opportunity as men.