We will prove “Yes We Can”: SEWA Chairperson

Exhorting woman cooperators coming from various parts of the country Mirai Chatterjee, Chairperson of SEWA said there is a need to prove that we can run our cooperatives better than others. The occasion was a two day national workshop titled “strengthening woman cooperatives” on Tuesday at NCUI’s Auditorium in Delhi.

Narrating her experiences with SEWA she said woman can run the affairs of cooperatives quite smoothly; we can have organized board meetings, we can keep the minutes of meeting neatly and we can hold elections on time. We need to prove to the world “yes we can”, she was emphatic.

Chatterjee also referred to the ambience of Workshop and said ”you all must have noticed the difference; when woman is in command there is a different buzz.

Crediting Ela Bhatt for introducing cooperative in SEWA she said it’s a unique combo of trade union and cooperatives. Founded in 1972 by Ela Bhatt, SEWA has grown into a 20lakh strong organisation playing a pioneering role in socio-economic and political empowerment of women. It offers micro-lending, health and life insurances, and child care – all overseen by more than a hundred women-run cooperatives.

We had to knock at the door of Registrar of cooperative societies for two years before he allowed us to have enrollment as woman cooperatives in Gujarat. We began with 30 and today we boast of more than 100 woman cooperatives in different sectors, she said tracing the history.

Foreign-educated Mirai Chatterjee joined SEWA as soon as she was done with her campus education. She wanted to be a medical practitioner but fate had laid-out a different course for her.

She sounded convincing, said several delegates to this correspondent.

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