It’s an honor to welcome Team SanScar onto the stage
- winner of best advocacy and action for the Global Goals at the GGWCup Mumbai 2019
Team SanScar! from Mission ScanScar were the proud winners of the Best Advocacy and Action category. A fierce team that played for Global Goal 5 and gender equality with a loud and clear message: All you can do, I can do bleeding.
We meet with the co-founders of Mission SanScar, Urvi Talaty and Sumati Joshi, on Skype, a week after the GGWCup Mumbai to talk about the story behind the capes, partnerships, and where they’ll take the ball from here.
by Mathilde Nielsen
It all starts with knowing your own body
Mission SanScar aims to promote good health and hygiene for young women in India. “We run behavioral intervention programs for girls” says Urvi, “where we make them aware what their body is, what puberty looks like, and how to take care of themselves when they’re menstruating.”
Getting girls and young women to understand their own bodies is tantamount in a society in which “taboos around women’s sexual health and menstrual hygiene” abound, says Sumati. For Sumati, women’s sexual health is “a starting point” for a variety of issues, “from women’s empowerment, to financial stability, to getting a graduate degree, all of it starts with knowing your own body.”
“One of the fundamentals that Mission SanScar always abides by,” Sumati tells me, is “collaboration with other organizations working with similar beneficiaries.” On all counts, Mission SanScar aims to be a multi-faceted program, from collaboration with other organizations to the emphasis on sustainable hygiene products.
Just For Kicks
It is clear that Mission SanScar puts their ethos of collaboration into action as they won the category of Best Advocacy and Action at the GGWCup in Mumbai. One of their collaborators at the GGWCup was Just For Kicks, an organization that aims to empower and educate children through soccer.
Sumati says they were motivated to partner with Just For Kicks because “they recently realized that girls are as enthusiastic as boys about sports” and they now “have a fantastic premier league with only women and girls playing in it.” Mission SanScar held a behavioral intervention workshop with the girls from Just For Kicks and then “we brought them on as cheerleaders during the Global Goals World Cup, which was insanely fun for us all,” says Sumati.
The Dharavi Project
Another collaboration was with The Dharavi Project which operates in the Dharavi slum in Mumbai and aims to change lives through music and art. Leading up to the GGWCup, “we ran several awareness campaigns in Dharavi” says Urvi, “and we talked to the kids about gender equality and what they think about women in sport.” One of The Dharavi Project’s initiatives is an after school Hip Hop club. Mission SanScar invited Dolly Rateshwar, who runs the Hip Hop Club, and Gayatri, the only girl beatboxer enrolled in the club, to join their team at the GGWCup.
The motivation for partnering with an organization like The Dharavi Project, says Sumati, is that “techniques like dance, music and art” are often the best ways to express seemingly radical ideas, especially among young children. In their conversations with children, says Sumati, they often understand concepts like sustainability and equality on an abstract global level, but the “trickier” part is getting the children to talk about how these concepts “apply to their everyday lives.” But generally, says Sumati “everyone we’ve worked with, on an authority level, has been very supportive of the cause.” And “one very important factor which really helps us,” adds Urvi, is that “younger kids are always so curious and want to know more.”
Mobilizing the Message
We were so proud to have the amazing team from Mission SanScar playing in our Mumbai GGWCUP. When asked about the experience, Sumati says it was a “great way of networking, we met some incredible women from diverse backgrounds doing some really good work.” She continues, “I think the World Cup was an incredible platform to mobilize the message that each teams was playing for. Whatever the SDG may be, I think it was an incredible platform because people got together for a cause and got an opportunity to put forth their message.”
This is only the beginning. Period
So far, Mission SanScar has impacted 150 girls directly through their programs and reached about one thousand beneficiaries. Now they can reach you too- get social and help the team spread the message. Connect with Mission SanScar on Facebook & Instagram.
Keep up the amazing work, Team SanScar! and Urvi & Sumati.
About the founders: Urvi Talaty and Sumati Joshi co-founded Mission SanScar in 2016 after being awarded a Resolutions Fellowship by The Resolution Project, a project designed to award young socially responsible leaders with resources and support.