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Our Lives.. Behind the Names:

NAKUSHA and NIRASHA, the words written on the whiteboard surprised us. We had all gathered as participants of the Godrej Salon-i Life Skills workshop. These two words made us look at the facilitator with surprise. Unfazed he continued, “What would you think of these names, would you give these names to your daughters?”

Many of us were perplexed and in shock. How can we name someone Nirasha, which meant hopelessness? Soon enough we were shown a video - and we got to know that such names are not unknown. The activity followed with a group work where we were asked to discuss and list down such similar names we knew of.

The same people, now having overcome their initial surprise, seemed to be abuzz with their own lived experiences, with their anguish of being called Kaali or Moti, of being body-shamed, of living the burden of not being wanted. The space became emotional with stories of betrayal, discrimination and also of trust, longing and sharing. Amidst the sorrow, we all seemed to embrace each other in sisterhood. Above all, we understood, how comforting a safe space can be, a space to come together and share, look back into our lives, understand, listen to our own words and feel hope.

This session was a part of the Salon-i Life Skills program.

Our life skills workshops are designed to raise awareness, develop empathy, explore feelings, and promote a positive change amongst women. We have created a framework through which women learn the art of effective communication. They have become more adept at solving their own problems in a healthy and positive manner.

The Life Skills module starts with the sections ME to WE, facilitating the journey of the trainee from a lone disconnected self to an active member of the group. We discuss about Safe Working Spaces and aim to look at issues through a gender lens. This helps to strengthen negotiation with family and society.Life skills are our tool to facilitate a metamorphosis, break the shackles of muted inaction and above all to create the circle of trust.

In case anyone is eager to know more of the Salon-i Life Skills Module, kindly write to us at


Godrej One, Pirojshahnagar,
Eastern Express Highway,
Vikhroli East, Mumbai, Maharashtra Pin Code - 400 079