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Four acid attack survivors set to run Noida-based Sheroes café

By wasmulhaq 
Updated Date

Noida: The lives of acid attack survivors are miserable. They have to go from hospital to hospital for treatment and surgery. The surviving party needs a huge amount of money to meet their hospital expenses, which is difficult to afford, and the people around them behave towards them in unusual ways, as if they have committed some crime. They become the victims of social distancing or boycotts as well.

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Some NGOs have come forward in this regard to settle the lives of acid survivors by providing them with work. The Noida-based Chhanv Foundation came up with the idea of unveiling a Sheroes café, which would be run by acid attack survivors.

The NGO has had its outlets in Agra since 2014. Its other outlet is running in Lucknow, while the third branch was launched in Noida on Tuesday.

 “The project aims to employ acid attack survivors. This initiative will help them become self-reliant, “said Ritu Maheshwari, chief executive officer of the Noida authority.

A girl named Seema, who became one of the 2016 acid attack victims at Akbarpur in Ambedkar Nagar, had to struggle a lot during this period. It was not easy for Seema to convince her family members to allow her to leave home. She used to visit Lucknow for treatment. There she learned about Sheroes café house.

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She said, “My family was not in favour…” I never liked the restrictions and felt suffocated. They also stopped supporting me. The people at Sheroes were welcoming when I visited the café in Lucknow… I’m happy. I will now be an employee.

Whenever I had to come to Lucknow, my family would make me take the 4 am bus so that not many people could see my face. I used to come alone. I got a lot of confidence after I found out about Sheroes café in Lucknow and started going there. I could see the women working there without any fear, “she said.

Two kiosks of the cafe have been set up at the Noida Stadium in Sector 21A in collaboration with the Noida Authority, said Ashish Shukla, the director of Chhanv Foundation.

“This is our third venture after Agra and Lucknow. Four women will work here, and 28 others are currently employed at the other two outlets, “he said.

It is a positive step by the NGO to improve the lives of acid attack surviving girls.

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