Marrying and Moving: Despite growing up in Surat, a medium-sized city, Rashmi only studied until ninth grade. Five years ago, when she was 21, her parents arranged for her to be married. Her subsequent move to Mumbai was made easier when her new mother-in-law, an embroidery artisan at Nirmaan Collective, encouraged her to take her place when she retired.
Finding Her Place: "Everything was very new when I came to Mumbai," she shares. "I gained a lot of strength from the confident, happy women at Nirmaan and my self-respect grew. My son, Kabir, is 4 years old and already I am able to save some money for his future, now that I am working and earning."
Expanding her Horizons: "The program I like the best is reading newspapers once a week. We look at different sections of several papers and choose 2-3 articles to read aloud and discuss. We learn about many things and talk about doing what is right. One article was about a poor sweeper who wanted to study and did just that much later in life. She went on to college and then started a nursery school of her own. This made me think that if she can do that, then it is not too late for me to learn computers or fashion design which I have always wanted to do!" -- Rashmi Sharma, Embroidery artisan at Nirmaan collective.