We create opportunities for mothers of children with developmental disabilities to support, empower, and learn from each other.
Priyam Global’s mission is to develop the most effective self-empowerment model for mothers* of children with disabilities in developing countries.
Based in India, we are designing a self-sustaining, self-generating program in which mothers of children with disabilities play an active role in developing their own practical skills and leadership ability.
Women supported by Priyam Global are all mothers who are living below the international poverty line (less than $2 per day). Each woman has faced significant barriers to being accepted, being a part of a thriving social network, working and earning income, and achieving her individual potential.
Our program is a “gently intensive” project that runs for one year. Mothers take classes on child health and parenting, personal health and nutrition, and life skills that range from filling out government forms to communicating effectively. Each mother also focuses on learning and developing a marketable skill that she can use to earn sustainable, flexible income.
Mothers who have graduated from our program are more confident, more emotionally stable, and less anxious about the future.
essential program components
Income-generating skills development (sustainable livelihoods through context-appropriate small enterprises)
Financial stewardship skills development (counseling, goal setting, group sessions, monthly stipend)
Psychological health and wellbeing (linking with other mothers, group and individual counseling, recreation and respite care)
Physical health and wellbeing (home health assessments, classes in nutrition and hygiene, maternal health check ups)
It is our ambitious goal to become the world leading expert on developing comprehensive programs for mothers of children with disabilities in poverty. We work to bring women together to access essential care for themselves and their children, create safe spaces in which they can express themselves and receive support, and develop their own approaches to earning sustainable livelihoods for their families.
*We currently focus primarily on mothers, as culturally they are the primary caregivers in India. However, we include fathers and siblings in many aspects of our program and hope to expand further into father and sibling support
Invest in women.
Our program is based on years of ongoing consultations with mothers of children with disabilities in poverty.
Mothers consistently outline their needs and their ideas for solutions to those needs. These can be formed into four broad categories:
Need for education about childhood disability and health
Need for money to offset the increased financial burden of rehabilitation and transportation
Need for social support to offset the results of living in stigmatizing communities and cultures
Need for community inclusion when family members and neighbors isolate them or their child.
In India, 35% of people with disabilities are children.
India is home to an estimated 12 million children who are affected by disability. Disability can be heavily stigmatized in Indian communities, isolating children and leaving the full-time task of caring for the children to their families. Usually, this responsibility is borne solely by that child's mother with little to no support from anyone else.
The child's disability, which reduces the amount of time that his or her parents can work and can lead to increased costs for healthcare, often affects the entire family. Poverty leads to disability, and disability leads to worsened poverty.
A mother in India who is raising a child with autism or cerebral palsy, for example, is very likely to feel isolated, depressed, or anxious. In addition to flexible education and flexible training to launch her own home-based enterprise, she will need an initial phase of extensive support and mentorship to offset years of isolation, depression, and poor healthcare.