Mangaluru: The Division for Gender (including Transgender) Studies and Research, Centre for Ethics, Yenepoya (Deemed to be University) conducted a community engagement program with transgender people on 24 June 2023. The meeting was led by Dr Vina Vaswani, Professor, of Forensic Medicine and Director, Centre for Ethics. The chief guest was Surumi Farhaad also the Patron of the Division. The meeting was attended by Dr Vijaya Hegde, Professor and Head, Department of Public Health Dentistry, A.J. Institute of Dental Sciences, Mangalore, Yashomathi Ravindranath, President, Rotary Club, Suratkal, C.H. Abdul Gafoor, Social Worker, Moodabidiri, Yogesh Kulai, Social Worker, Mangaluru, and Obeida Shoukat, Student Welfare Officer, Yenepoya (Deemed to be University). Six transgender representatives attended the meeting.
The program aimed to address the need for education and job opportunities for transgender individuals, with the purpose of facilitating mainstreaming of the transgender community into the social fabric and it proved to be highly successful in fostering their empowerment. During the meeting, it was resolved to organize a series of discussions and interactive sessions with the transgender community members to understand their needs and aspirations better.
A significant number of transgender participants expressed a keen interest in learning spoken English and computer skills, as they recognized the value and potential employment opportunities that these skills could offer them. In response to their needs, it was resolved to reach out to the Rotary Club of Suratkal, which has been actively supporting various social initiatives. The Rotary Club pledged to provide free computer education and English language classes to the transgender community. This initiative will enable them to gain valuable skills and enhance their employability prospects.
The computer education program will cover basic computer literacy, including operating systems, internet usage, and essential software applications. The English language classes will also focus on spoken English, enabling participants to communicate effectively and confidently in professional settings.
The Division for Gender (including Transgender) Studies and Research extends heartfelt gratitude to the Rotary Club of Suratkal for its commitment to empowering the transgender community through education and skill development. Their support will undoubtedly make a substantial difference in the lives of these individuals, offering them new avenues for personal and professional growth.
The attendees expressed confidence that this initiative will have a long-lasting positive impact on the transgender community in Suratkal, fostering their social inclusion and contributing to their overall well-being. It is hoped that this collaboration will inspire other organizations and individuals to join hands in promoting inclusivity and equal opportunities for all. The meeting ended with a vote of thanks followed by a lunch.