Savitri Bhakuni – Kausani
There are times when you meet people that impact you in incomprehensible ways. Some conversations and people stay with you forever, and today we unearth an awe-inspiring journey of a formidable woman. Meet Savitri Bhakuni, a native of Almora who serves as a source of inspiration to countless girls around her as she continues to move up in the world with perseverance and determination.
“I come from a middle-class family of four children, and a father who worked tirelessly to support us and give us the finest education he could while my mother worked in the fields. Growing up, I knew I wanted to accomplish something worthwhile in life to make sure I honour my parents’ efforts and sacrifices,” she says. Savitri passed school in 2009 and continued to pursue further education. She recalls her time as a teacher in the same school she studied in, and expresses how crucial it is to learn different things, even when you are out of school.
Her life shifted its trajectory when she joined B2R in 2013. She recalls her past self with a smile. “I was very hesitant at first. Girls here don’t get opportunities to expand their horizons much, but I was determined to get above 80% every single day during my training. To think how much my legs would shake back then! I’ve come a long way since then.”
She speaks about her work and B2R with such passion and conviction that it speaks volumes. She recollects her experience in Chennai when she, along with a few others, were selected to go there for training. “I wasn’t positive if my parents would let me go, but they were supportive and proud of me”. After what she calls one of the most enriching experiences of her life, she had the chance to teach what she had learnt to others. “I never expected to make it this far. I’m very grateful for the opportunities I’ve had to grow,”she says with a smile.
When I ask her where she sees herself in 5 years from now, she says, “above my ongoing role of Team Leader. I want to keep moving upwards and keep working here”. A proper leader, she is a Senior Project Coordinator and manages her team, allocates tasks, creates strategies on how to increase the skills of her team and reports to clients and is in direct contact with them.
I ask her about the extent of impact B2R created around her, and she explains the stories of young people, specifically girls, incredibly poignantly, illustrating how much B2R has allowed them to grow. “In the mountains, people do not wish to send their girls outside, but when people see the work done here and the number of women who work here, they feel they should send their girls to work too. People in the cities might not grasp the significance of this, but it is revolutionary here.”