Hi! I'm Lipi Gupta.

I had an adventure this summer in Agra, India trying to make a difference in the lives of 35 young women of Nagla Kharga Village. I'd like to share my experience with you; I hope their stories move you as much as they have inspired me! Thank you for reading and feel free to contact me [by posting a comment/question] if I can be of assistance in any way, in a similar endeavor of yours!

Project SHAKTI was funded as one of 2009's 100 Projects for Peace.

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Lessons Learned | What Would I Do Differently if I Could Do it Again?

  • A mistake I made was in hesitating to make use of the contact network I could tap from family connections in Agra. I wanted to find people who would help me purely because they believed in my mission. However, my thinking was too idealistic for my limited time frame and it considerably slowed down my efforts to find doctors for the medical screening I wanted to hold. (Because of this mistake in addition to falling ill when time was running out, the medical screening did not happen even though I had done all the necessary paperwork by then.)
  • Despite my efforts, there were a few girls I couldn't get through to as much...girls who often had blank eyes and who communicated and actively participated very little even after improving. I struggled to find something that would inspire them. I am not sure if I did. After thinking very hard about this, I have decided that there may not have been anything I could have done differently to be more effective with them. This is primarily because I had limited time - and there was no way I could take time and attention from the other girls who were responding well to me.
  • It would have been more helpful to have practiced writing Hindi (perhaps rather than spending so much of my time before arriving in India preparing ice-breaker activities and lessons. I was trying to be proactive and prepared, however, I soon realized after trying the activities out, that the girls' learning style and idea of "fun" learning was different than I had anticipated.)

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