Welcome to Sambhali's website


Sambhali Trust is now working in the local villages of the rural Thar desert area 100km west of Jodhpur near Setrawa where Sambhali already has a Primary Education Centre.

People in these communities are very poor, live in basic huts, maybe 5 or 6 in one family, without electricity, needing to fetch water from a well and living a hand-to-mouth existence. Since the outbreak of Covid-19, and the lockdown which began in India on 25 March, these villagers have been without an income since the quarries closed down where they were working as labourers. There are also widows and widowers, elderly and vulnerable people all needing help.

Sambhali is working with the local village leaders and government administration to provide food kits and soap to these families. We have the help of between 7-13 volunteers and 4 local drivers who have all worked together to purchase and deliver supplies to these villagers who live in the sparse areas, amongst the sand dunes in temperatures exceeding 40 degrees C every day. We were initially asked to help 22 families, with food and basic supplies which soon turned into 200 families and now currently stands at helping 450 families, working in 11 villages and hamlets near to Setrawa. Each family is provided with groceries including flour, rice, oil, pulses, tea, sugar, spices, jaggery and soap. Food kits are provided every 15 days and 4 rounds have been completed already with the 5th starting today.

In addition to this 1065 families have been surveyed in the area, who have all been given information on Covid-19 and basic hygiene and over 250 people have been registered on a Whatsapp group (managed by Sambhali) to provide the latest information on the pandemic.

Sambhali has spent US$ 18461 since 22 March 2020 providing food and supplies to these villagers. We understand that the lockdown in India will continue after 18 May in a slightly different form, but we will keep providing food to these poor communities until the quarries re-open, (date unknown) and then in the following transition period to secure basic supplies to these families.

We established a Milaap Crowdfunding site earlier this year to support the education of the children in these rural villages. Now we are helping to feed the families of these same children and many others. Your support has been vital in helping provide basic supplies to these villages. We are very grateful for all your contributions.

Sambhali Trust 14 May 2020

Read the report [138 KB] of german volunteer Carin Troll - "Stay at Sambhali" - about her experiences in Setrawa during Corona crisis.
Check our continuous updates and videos on our facebook page!

The development by 30 April 2020:

All photos by our volunteer © Veronika Goepfert/Switzerland

Sambhali's Projects during Covid-19 pandemic

Following the guidelines from the Rajasthan government, all Sambhali’s centres, boarding homes and both boutiques closed on 14 March 2020.
Our office is now open 11 - 2pm Monday to Saturday until further notice.
India has been in lockdown since 25 March 2020 and will be entering into its 4th phase from 18 May. Details of this haven’t been provided yet, but from PM Modi’s address on 12 May, at its heart is supporting business enterprises by providing an economic package, focusing on local manufacturing, local markets and local supply chains with an easing of restrictions in orange and green zones. However, unfortunately, Jodhpur as a city is designated as a red zone. We await further details as to when it may be possible to re-open our centres and when children are able to return to school.

Sambhali Trust 14 May 2020

Sambhali Trust is an NGO focused on the development and empowerment of marginalized women and girls in Rajasthan. We work throughout Jodhpur and the surrounding Thar desert with women and children experiencing discrimination and violence on a daily basis due to economic, gender, and caste status. These women face extreme poverty and social exclusion - deprived of education, health care, and legal resources. Many lack any autonomy in their domestic lives, and face severe verbal, physical, and sexual abuse within their communities. At Sambhali, we equip underprivileged women with the tools to become financially independent, provide for their children, and establish self-sustaining communities of support.

Our mission
In Hindi, Sambhali means "strengthening of the deprived." We believe in a grassroots model for lasting, community-driven empowerment fostering dignity and self-confidence, encouraging deprived Rajasthani women to reclaim their worth.

Our work
We aim to break this cycle of poverty and dependence by providing vocational training in our sewing centers. We teach women valuable marketable skills to earn a living on their own. In our Empowerment Centres, we provide underprivileged women Rajasthani women and girls an education in English, Hindi, and Maths. Through our Scholarship Project and boarding homes, we sponsor children from poverty-stricken families to continue going to school. We provide counseling, health, and legal support when women are abused, abandoned, and blackmailed. Most importantly, we provide a space that is safe and free of discrimination, to uplift the hearts and voices of deprived Rajasthani women and nurture lasting networks of support.

Our Impact
9 Empowerment Centres
2 Boarding Homes
10,000 women and children reached
300 Sewing Centre graduates
265 Scholarship Project students
824 Nirbhaya Helpline Cases

Mrs. Shyama Tanwar, general secretary:
“When women come here, they are often very weak. They have been suffering financially and socially for a very long time, and feel very alone. When they arrive, they meet other women with similar struggles, and realise they are not alone in this. This is the first step to building confidence: having a community that is supportive and understanding. They start learning to sew, and when they improve they come to the graduate sewing center. There they are able to start making money, slowly becoming financially independent so that when they leave they feel empowered to continue earning their own livelihoods. These women learn English, Hindi, Math, and workshops including human rights, women’s health, economy, and more. They feel they have access to knowledge they were deprived from for so long, and this nurtures dignity. They are better able to provide for and teach their children, to nurture the next generation to be confident and powerful. And all of this happens in a safe and uplifting community of other women, that endures long after they leave Sambhali’s walls.”

At Sambhali, we follow three primary goals centered around self-confidence:
1. Building networks of lasting community support.
2. Promoting social and financial independence through training in valuable marketable skills.
3. Nurturing self-worth and strengthened future generations through education.

We are investing in current and future generations, to launch a community-driven ripple such that those waves of empowerment continue to spread throughout our community.