In Kalpana’s Words

5 04 2016

Kalpana is one of the wonderful people I worked with last year at Aangan. This is a very well deserved award. Congratulations!

The Aangan Blog

Kalpana at the CII Women Exemplar Awards in Delhi, 2016 Kalpana Mistry at the CII Women Exemplar Awards in Delhi, 2016

Aangan’s very own Kalpana Mistry has been selected as one of CII Foundation’s Women Exemplars for 2016. She was felicitated today (April 4, 2016)  in New Delhi and received her award from none other than the Finance Minister at CII’s Annual Session.  It’s a great honour and achievement, and we at Aangan are incredibly proud of Kalpana.

Here’s what Kalpana has to say about what this award and her work mean to her.

In Kalpana’s Words

Today I am just so overwhelmed. I feel a whole range of emotions many of which are impossible to describe.

Most overpoweringly, I feel blessed and fortunate that everything I have struggled for, worked for, everything I believe, every hurdle I have crossed, every hardship I have borne has been recognised and acknowledged. Being acknowledged is a very empowering feeling. I…

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On dignity, trust and giving children their voice

23 06 2015

Kalpana is one of the most dedicated people I know. She wrote an amazing post for Aangan about what it means to be a support person for children who have suffered serious harm.

The Aangan Blog

Kalpana, right, talking with 3 community members in Wadala, Mumbai. Kalpana, right, talking with 3 community members in Wadala, Mumbai.

I have worked with children for 25 years now. A lot of it has been with extremely vulnerable children – those living in slums, those from difficult socioeconomic backgrounds, those who have been victims of crimes or have suffered trauma, those who have ended up in shelters and children’s homes. Many of these kids witness and experience far more than any child should, at an age where he or she should be in school and their lives should be free of every worry other than maybe homework.

The right to life with dignity is a fundamental right of Indian citizens, yet dignity is a word often far removed from these children’s lives. For these children, and their families, the struggle to survive in their day-to-day lives is so fraught that quality of life is a distant, dim consideration.

Young girls…

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Hope

29 03 2015

What an amazing story!!!!

The Aangan Blog

Hope. On difficult days, I struggle with that word. To make sense of it when I listen to a 15-year old talk about how he thinks of killing himself so that the sound of the power loom he works at night and day will stop reverberating inside him. When Radha says she has nothing to live for anymore, because at 17, she’s already married, has a child, and been abandoned by her husband and family. When Owais, 13, draws himself up to his full height of four and a half feet and declares he’s a man because men work, and he also goes to work.

It’s moments like this that force me to look at whether change is possible, to question what it even looks like. How do you make impossible choices in desperate circumstances? Keep your head above the water?

The first time I met Shabana was a few…

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Passage to India

3 03 2012

Yes, life is good… A few months ago Hiranmay asked me if I found a good nice Indian restaurant in Brussels, close to the foodie experience I had in India… Well, there is a God 🙂 Last night I had an amazing dinner experience with my friends at “Passage to India”. The food is divine and the restaurant is right in my commune, so close to my house that I can’t believe I didn’t saw it since I moved to Brussels last July. It’s on “Chaussee de Louvain 223, 1210 Brussels” and they also have delivery 😀

The owner told us that he imports all the cheese and spices from India and I must say that even our very Indian friend Dipika approved of the merchandise 😀 Unfortunately Rach couldn’t join us but I am sure she would have loved the food too 🙂

Mutton Kashmiri and Mango Lassi

I totally recommend the Mutton Kashmir. I used to hate mutton. I discovered how good it can be in India and last night I just couldn’t help myself. It was heavenly good… Dipika vouches for the Channa Masala and the Mutter Panner and Rochelle for the Butter Chicken. I normally am willing to try out other dishes but I was so happy with my food, the Masala Chai and the Mango Lassi that I wasn’t willing to ruin the taste. The owner reminded me of the times in India when I was asked all the time how spicy I want my food. I remember everybody being concern back then with how much spice I could take… My dish was a sweet one, but he did ask the others how spicy they want the food.

Great service and great atmosphere… We will go there again and again… and again. Especially since they even have Kingfisher Beer 🙂

Here are more pictures 🙂








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