How Humans of Bombay is helping a sex worker's daughter study at New York University

We have seen the impact the ‘Humans of New York’ Facebook page has had. The stories of individuals who seem like 'just part of the crowd' have brought out accounts of pain, suffering, happiness and triumph, and the positivity spread through the initiative has inspired a lot of people around the world to start something similar themselves.

One such initiative from India is already getting recognition for their work. The similarly-named ‘Humans of Bombay’ has been following the same model as ‘Humans of New York’, by covering people from all walks of lives and inviting them to share their stories. Their stories are heart-warming and beautiful, but one recent post stands out for the sheer willpower and strength of the person profiled.

Ashwini. Image via Humans of Bombay

Ashwini. Image via Humans of Bombay

Ashwini shared her harrowing story, starting from an abusive childhood at the hands of her mother who was a sex worker and then running away to a Christian hostel with an equally abusive environment, during her teenage years. “If we didn’t follow even one of their rules we would be beaten and starved for days. My mother passed away during this time, so I took this abuse for 10 years because I didn’t know any better," she told the page.

Fortunately, a few of her hostel acquaintances helped her to run away to an NGO called Kranti which looks after girls like Ashwini. Her decision to escape to the NGO changed her life. Ashwini's rehabilitation and experience with the NGO even helped her get through to New York University with a full scholarship!

However her accommodation and day-to-day expenses were not being covered by the University. The Humans of Bombay page decided to use their massive reach and appealed at the end of the photo’s caption to donate any sum for Ashwini with a link to the donation website. In four days, her funding page has raised over Rs 11 lakh in total, with people donating from all around the world.

It is amazing to see the power of social media and how initiatives like ‘Humans of Bombay’ have used their popularity to help real people in need. If you want to help Ashwini pursue her education in New York, click here to donate.

Updated Date: Jun 09, 2017 14:30 PM

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