By Anudeep Sharma
Hyderabad: Breaking stereotypes and barriers, Jai Bharathi, founder, Moving Women Social Initiatives Foundation (MOWO), and her team travelled on two-wheelers across the country covering more than 20 cities and 11,111 km.
Moving Borders Tour which went on for more than 40 days was organised by the MOWO in association with Shell Foundation and the UK government and aimed to raise awareness about gender-inclusive mobility and encourage more women to pick up the skill of driving.
Starting from Hyderabad, Jai Bharathi and her team travelled to cities such as Bengaluru, Chennai, Kochi, Goa, Pune, Mumbai, Surat, Ahmedabad, Udaipur, Jaipur, Amritsar, Srinagar, Chandigarh, New Delhi, Lucknow, Varanasi, Patna, Guwahati, Ranchi, Bhubaneshwar among others.
During the journey, the team met with many inspiring women including the women auto-rickshaw drivers in Chennai to the women delivery partners of Jaipur. They also met and interacted with like-minded organisations across the mobility spectrum, including AatmNirbhar, Bikerni, Taxshe, Metro Ride India, and more, which are committed to putting women in the driver’s seat and making the streets more safe and equal.
Moving Boundaries campaign seeks to promote awareness on the importance of women acquiring the power of driving and travelling safely to expand their horizons in all aspects of their lives. Thus enabling women to not only learn to drive but also own electric vehicles to generate income.
As part of the campaign, a WhatsApp chatbot at +918885916606 has been rolled out in multiple languages for women who would like to learn to drive a two or three-wheeled vehicle or apply for a job as a taxi, auto or delivery rider. ‘Even Cargo’, a social enterprise providing training, employment, and electric vehicle ownership to women drivers are also supporting this campaign.
Jai Bharathi said, “I can’t wait to witness how this journey cascades into a wave of women drivers on the roads across India.” Shipra Nayyar, Shell Foundation said, “We will see a sizable number of women drivers owning and driving electric vehicles in over 100 cities and villages across India.”
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