By Anudeep Sharma
Hyderabad: To overcome stereotypes and barriers, Jai Bharathi, founder of the Moving Women Social Initiatives Foundation (MOWO), and her team traveled the country on two-wheelers, covering more than 20 cities and 11,111 km.
The 40-day-long Moving Borders Tour was organized by MOWO in collaboration with the Shell Foundation and the UK Government and aimed to raise awareness of gender-sensitive mobility and encourage more women to learn to drive.
From Hyderabad, Jai Bharathi and her team traveled 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 trip, the team met many inspiring women, from the female auto rickshaw drivers in Chennai to the female delivery partners in Jaipur. They also met and interacted with like-minded organizations across the mobility spectrum including AatmNirbhar, Bikerni, Taxshe, Metro Ride India and more, who are committed to putting women in the driver’s seat and making the streets safer and more equal.
The Moving Boundaries campaign aims to raise awareness of the fact that women acquire the ability to drive and travel safely in order to broaden their horizons in all aspects of their lives. In this way, women can not only learn to drive, but also own electric vehicles in order to generate an income.
As part of the campaign, a WhatsApp chatbot on +918885916606 was rolled out in several languages for women who want to learn to drive a two- or three-wheeled vehicle or who want to apply to be a taxi, car or delivery driver. Even Cargo, a social enterprise that offers female drivers training, employment and electric vehicle ownership, also supports this campaign.
Jai Bharathi said, “I can’t wait to see this journey transform into a wave of female drivers on the roads across India.” Shipra Nayyar, Shell Foundation, said, “We will be in over 100 cities and villages across India see a significant number of women drivers who own and drive electric vehicles. “
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