If we talk about human rights and feminism, we have a new face in the league and it’s Priyanka Raina. Indian Cricketer Suresh Raina’s better half, Priyanka is making news all over these days. Working closely with the women of India, Priyanka is engaged in a lot of social work and runs a charitable foundation called ‘Gracia Raina Foundation’ named after her daughter Priyanka. Priyanka isn’t alone; Suresh too is working along with her to help the girl child. Priyanka has taken this venture further with ‘The Priyanka Raina Show’ on Red Fm that is solely dedicated to women. For the same initiative, Suresh Raina has also given his voice to a beautiful song, ‘Bitiya Rani’. The couple’s initiative is receiving widespread accolades everywhere.
WE had a word with Priyanka and her initiative for the women of this nation is commendable. Here is what she had to share:
Tell us something about your show.
This show is all about women, for women. Basically, in this show we have people coming in and sharing their stories related to women safety, abuse or harassment. We also have a lot of people who have been active in this area.
What is the key objective of your foundation GRF?
I started GRF 9 months ago, last May. We are still very new. We have a lot of initiatives in collaboration with other foundations. We have arranged a couple of medical camps for children and women and I have been involved with universities as well like IIT. We also have awareness sessions and we even visited some villages where women spoke about their problems. So we work on women and child health, both physical and mental, specifically on maternal health. We have been working on spreading awareness and soon we are going to launch our wellness center where women will be coming in and getting more knowledge and awareness about their own self.
We will be giving them expert advice with experts and doctors visiting the center. Also, this will be a happy zone for them where they can interact with other women and have time out from their day to day life. They will also get to learn some skill or a happy thing like makeup and music. It is basically a 360-degree program on which we are working on.
What made you engage in this social work and your charitable foundation?
When I gave birth to my daughter in the Netherlands, I moved back to India. Of course, this phase is entirely different; you go through a lot, both positive and negative. That was the time that made me think like being a person coming from a family that supports you a lot, still, it is a hard journey for a woman. There are many women who don’t have such privileges. I had the privilege to get connected with one such initiative, one with Red FM where I was on the ground meeting women and children who are going through various problems. That made me think why not do something on my own where I could expand it the way I like.
What is your take on women safety in India?
It’s changing, it’s definitely changing. I see women stand stronger today. A lot of initiatives are being taken but still, a lot needs to be done yet.
There are not one or two, there are many stereotypes and taboos. I also feel that the major thing is awareness. Talking is the first step, a lot of times; people don’t even know how to raise their voice. If women are aware, they can surely take some step towards changing their situation. And of course, we have to help each other; it’s not just men towards women but also women being there for women.
What all changes do you think our society needs to make?
I feel that something which we need to work on more seriously. We need to bring men up in such a way that they respect women. They must understand the value of having a woman in life. We need to work on various things. It was devastating when I was not in India and got to know about women being victimized. I even read about foreign tourists getting victimized and it disturbed me. I believe it all comes from the mindset and psychology of people which parents need to work on.
What is your opinion on the current justice system of the country?
As I said, it’s changing, it’s changing gradually. The justice is being given rather in some cases and in other cases, it gets very time taking and it makes people upset about it, which is justified.
How do you see the status of women in the coming years?
I see more equality, more empowerment in the coming years. Also, I believe, women will be more respected and valued. I am sure we will get there very soon!
One message you wish to send across to all our women readers.
I wish to tell every woman that they are the strongest species on the planet. Women are full circle and have all powers inside them, they just need to realize it and we need to stand for each other and make each other stronger.