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Ujwala completed her Masters in Development studies at a reputed institute. She appeared in many interviews and finally was chosen by one of the recognised NGO firms in the country. During her probation period, she had to prepare a project which involved the local community and their participation in the upliftment of the entire area. She chose to work in one of the remote Tribal hamlets in the country.
She went there with her team with lot of zeal and enthusiasm. Her two years of masters degree had taught her so much of confidence and the perspective to see things differently. She started meeting the local villagers there. They had varied problems like lack of health care facilities, lack of schools, lack of safe drinking water, lack of knowledge about basic hygiene. Every problem was bigger than the other. She understood that her project was going to be tougher than what she had anticipated.
As per Ujwala, the biggest problem was lack of educational institution. Due to ignorance, their life was like a viscous circle and they were just not ready to have a different view point towards life. Ujwala, as a passionate individual vowed to put her best foot forward. After all, she had opted to study the development studies only because she wanted to bring about a change in people’s lives. After about two months into the project her team prepared a pseudo report and wanted to move back. But Ujwala did not agree with this easy way out. Her team left without her. But she chose to stay back. Her parents being city dwellers were tensed about their daughter’s future. However nothing could deter her from her determination to bring in a change.
She slowly became one among the tribal community. Their simple lifestyle and non – complex way of understanding life motivated Ujwala to devote herself towards development. There were times when she did not know if she was in the right path. Her friends were settled in abroad and she was almost becoming primitive stating in the remote corner which seemed like a different world all together. But her inner self never let her give up on her efforts.
Slowly but steadily she got accepted in the community. The tribal folk understood that she was really their well wisher and hence cooperated with her. After about four years of relentless work, Ujwala managed to start a school for the young boys and girls. There was no building but the school operated under the open sky. She managed to convince the doctors posted in the near by government hospital to visit the small village atleast once in a month and herself assisted the doctors. She made numerous attempts to submit application at the block office for grant of aid to set up a tube well so that the women did not have to walk miles to fetch drinking water.
After many failed attempts, she did manage to draw the eyes of the authorities. Every week she used to assemble the entire tribal clan and their chiefs and encouraged about holding discussions about the development of the village. She was now the most beloved person of the entire village. Her open air School slowly got recognised and grants were sanctioned for its infrastructure. Her efforts came to be known and she gained recognition from the local and gradually from the state government. She was invited to meet the governor of the state. Her ideas and the ways in which she gained the faith of the villagers who are other wise quite reluctant to any change were now a subject of interest for many government officials. She joined as a consultant in the Tribal Welfare Department of the state Government and helped in policy making .She did not earn a hefty amount but the love, appreciation and fame that she achieved was far more than any financial benefit. Ujwala had made her family, her alma matter proud.
Nothing under the sky could deter a determined person to bring in positive change. Do good and good will come back to you.