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Aaina takes another major step, "Towards Inclusion"as it gets involved in PACS project in Odisha

aaina becomes a part of the PACS project in Odisha. "Towards Inclusion" is a four year project with special focus on livelihood and education of Persons with Disabilities and children. It covers 6 blocks (350 villages) of Kandhamal and 1 block of Boudh district of Odisha. The purpose of the project is to enhance the livelihood options of PWDs and women by promoting their rights under MGNREGA and to reduce the social acceptance of discriminations on the basis of gender, caste, religion and disability at school by promoting inclusive education. Key strategies to meet the "livelihood" outcomes include advocacy for inclusion of PWDs under MGNREGA, promoting exclusive groups-Shramik Sangha and media advocacy. Key strategies to meet the "education" outcome include mobilizing children into inclusive groups, mobilizing adults as child protection committee (CPC) members and promoting "Good School" concept. The project was started in the month of September 2011. The staff orientation training was held on RTE, RTI, JJB, UNCRC, PWD Act-1995, UNCRPD and on baseline survey. The baseline survey was started in the last week of November and was completed in 35-sample Villages of Kandhamal & Boudh district . The workshop on RTE & Inclusive Education for the implementers was organized in 4 blocks of Kandhamal (Phulbani,Khajuripada,G.Udayagiri,Tikabali). Thirty teachers along with BRCC, CRCC participated in each workshop. This is one of the activities with a specific objective of implementation of RTE in the coverage area and mobilization of scholarships and other benefits for the children from excluded communities & other facilities. The aim of formation and promotion of Shramika Sanghas at villages including PWDs and women and promotion collective of Sanghas at GP, Block and District level is to ensure the inclusion of PWDs and women in NREGA and also to promote collective people's efforts to continue fighting for their rights. The aim of children clubs at villages is to ensure the rights of children to participate and also to create a model of inclusion at the community level. Aaina staff also celebrated IWD, on 8th March 2012 across many of the coverage areas (Phulbani,Tikabali,Phiringia,Khajuripada). In district headquarter the district administration celebrated the day in collaboration with some leading CSOs of the District. This was followed by a rally and meeting amongst the govt. officials, teachers, ICDS workers, women representative from various SHG groups, and representative from various organizations, to discuss various issues affecting women.