Autar Nehru (Delhi)
Delhi-based Shikha Agnihotri is state president of the Delhi Public Safety & Security Council (DPSSC) of the Women’s Indian Chamber of Commerce & Industry (WICCI), a representative organisation of women entrepreneurs and business leaders countrywide. A seasoned travel professional, she is also promoter of Young Edsplorer Pvt. Ltd (YEPL, estb.2015), an education consultancy which works in partnership with schools to provide experiential learning programmes to their students. Over the past five years, the firm has signed up 200 schools and provided experiential learning to class III-XII children in the areas of STEM, arts and adventure.
In 2019, Agnihotri launched The Right Side Story, an initiative to educate women and children about the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 and Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (Pocso) Act, 2012.
Newspeg. At the height of the Covid-19 pandemic last September, DPSSC started a legal literacy campaign in schools in Delhi NCR to educate students, teachers, parents and administrators about the protective and grievance redressal provisions of the Pocso Act.
Direct talk. “Child safety and security is one of the biggest challenges of our times. From sexual abuse to physical violence and cyber bullying, crimes against children are on the rise worldwide. In 2012, the Union government took an important step forward to curb child abuse by enacting the Pocso Act. However, despite the Act being in force for over eight years, awareness about its provisions is very limited. The objective of The Right Side Story and legacy literacy campaigns is to spread awareness about the Act’s provisions and processes,” says Agnihotri.
According to her, DPSSC has specially designed online training modules to educate children, parents, teachers and care-givers on Pocso provisions. “While for adults, the training modules provide information on ways and means to report crimes against children, for children we focus on sensitising them to good and bad touch, cyber bullying, social media and online sexual abuse,” she explains.
Future plans. While currently this initiative is focused on schools in Delhi NCR, there are plans to take the campaign nationwide. “WICCI is collaborating with Unicef, WHO, NCPCR, NGOs, municipal corporations, and local government bodies to reach out to education institutions countrywide and help create safer environments for children,” she says.
Way to go, Sis!