An insight into Pratisandhi, a new born organisation fighting long born stigmas around sex
A Google search of the Sanskrit word pratisandhi would tell you that it means ‘a search’. It has several other meanings and sophisticated connotations but in terms of social relevance in this city, Pratisandhi is an active organisation promoting sex education amongst student and the usual prude masses that constitute our Indian society.
The basic virtue driving their work can be better understood through their Instagram bio which reads, ‘Promoting dialogue about issues surrounding sexual health and education in India.’. Recruiting several school and college students as a part of their educational force, it conducts donation drives, awareness events such as open mics, and workshops for different age groups. They educate the masses on several basics of the sex ed which should have been very much a part of our school syllabi, like safe and unsafe touch, general sexual hygiene, and consent.
Tracing back its story, Pratisandhi was founded back in March of the previous year, as an online project to help spread sexual awareness. As the organisation’s social media spokesperson tells us, ‘It helped in discussing things that youngsters often questioned but didn’t have an outlet to find accurate answers to.’ The effort was the brainchild of Niyati Sharma and her gynaecologist mother.
However, with the passage of time, Pratisandhi quickly grew as an on-ground project so as to make such information more viable to people who don’t always have the luxury of questioning what they’re taught. A trip through their social media accounts can show you how Pratisandhi has constantly been on the move of teaching the commandments of sex-ed to children in small schools.
It’s a fresh change to see youngsters involved in such projects as talking and educating about sex should come out in the open instead of being limited to shushed, awkward whispers. Currently, Niyati is involved in designing a curriculum on sexual education which can hopefully be introduced in Indian schools.
It’ll still take time to move over the so-called awkwardness of sex but if organisations like Pratisandhi will keep on working to normalise sex, then the fire of optimism will still burn for the future generations. The hope is still there that we pop the cherry of conservative communities and in that process, devirginise them!
Feature Image Credits – Pratisndhi
Feature Image Caption – Pehchaan, one of the several school workshops organised by Pratisandhi
Shaurya Singh Thapa