Personal Passion by Prakriti Poddar
My passion has always been at the forefront of everything I do. From the work I do for dislodging the stigma around mental health through the Poddar Foundation’s flagship program ‘Silence ti[Di[’ and the Wellness Consulting Company (Mind Over Image Consulting) we run for corporate wellness, educational wellness and personal wellness, within which we have a thriving center for wellness and healing. All of it revolves around the same narrative of creating spaces for conversation and uplifting the morale emotionally, mentally and physically to advancing people towards their excellence.
I’ve been lucky enough to find partners who feel the same passion and have something that I can strategically lead. Whether that be the university Peace Program at MIT, or setting up of a wellness company (Round Glass) or leading the strategy of the National Women’s Parliament.
Currently the National Women’s Parliament is my top most priority and the intention is to prepare it to grow organically and to find its own wings through the mechanics of like-minded partners. Through my personal practice and through the continuous depiction of women in media it perturbs me to see educated women in fear of democratic thought. Whether it is overt or covert there is an endemic disparity between the genders.
In spite of the women in our country being educated, in spite of being given opportunities, chances and tools, there is little empowerment. There are others who haven’t had that and are unaware of their personal and political freedom. Some do not even have autonomy over their bodies, their thoughts or themselves.
At the 2017 National Women’s Parliament while all the dignitaries talked about the reservations and policies I understood that no amount of policy change can impact one unless the men and women were open to making the change in their own personal day to day interactions. I was asked to be a speaker for at this massive platform in Amravati, Andhra Pradesh, which witnessed countless prominent women leaders speak to an audience of more than 18,000 women, giving them the chance to raise their voice.
While I was on that dais I could see in the eyes of these young leaders hope and desire to make a change. They just needed the road upon which to embark. The Founder hearing my speech realized my passion and asked me to move the NWP beyond a yearly gathering.
Now as the Chief Strategy Officer for this apolitical platform focused on steering participatory democracy I will move the platform towards unifying the voices of women in policy making. The agenda is to empower women through interaction with real influencers, through engagement with policy makers, to collaborate with skill development and coaching partners, to ensure understanding of the laws and the implications on them, to develop connectivity between women and the NGO’s that are working towards attending grievances.
The Mumbai chapter launch of the National Women’s Parliament is on the 29th of March, from 10 am onwards at the ISDI Parsons School of design, One Indiabulls centre, Lower Parel 400013. Prominent women leaders Amruta Fadnavis, Pankaja Munde, Minister for Women and Child Development, Vijaya Rahatkar, National President of the BJP Mahila Morcha, Charulata Ravi Kumar, Advisor and Entreprenuer, Vinita Vaid Singhgal, Secretary, Woman and Child Development are just few of the women who are slated to lead this platform and panel discussions.
I would be honoured if the we could share the invite to all the Rotarians so that the ladies could attend and the men could share this invite for attendance of the parliament with the Rotaryannes, their women colleagues as well as with the innerwheel and Rotaract Clubs as we would love to mobilize this movement towards gender become a part of this historic event.
I believe that together we can bring about real change.