The Shakti Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to empowering women and girls in Trinidad and Tobago, and beyond.
I believe that women’s insights, strengths and talents are essential in the creation of a diverse, thriving future.
Why was it started?
If you know my story you’ll know why this foundation was an inevitable step in my journey.
If you don’t know my story, I’ll give you the short version-
A few years ago, I was the victim of gender based violence. I was raped. And in trying to heal from this devastating incident, I came to see just how limited the resources are for women to not only heal from abuse, but also to grow and blossom into their fullest potential.
The word Shakti is the Sanskrit word for power.
Not just any kind of power, the feminine face of power.
It’s often used in conjunction with the word Shiva, as in ShivShakti. In yogic tradition Shiva means ‘that which is not’. He existed only as formless nothingness. Shakti came to him and out of their cosmic dance the universe as we know it was born.
There was nothing before Shakti.
Feminine power is essential for life, from this metaphorical level as well as a biological one.
And we believe that feminine power is also essential for our ability, as a culture, to thrive in all areas of life– from class rooms, to board rooms, to political offices and everything in between.
What Does The Shakti Foundation Do?
Host Free Workshops for Women
These help to create safe spaces for women impacted by gender based violence to not only share and connect, but to also get tools and resources to help them move forward.
Woman leave these spaces with actionable tools, insights and a community to help her thrive.
Raise Awareness at Universities and High Schools
Only 20% of female students who experienced sexual violence report it to the relevant authorities. (Source: Department of Justice)
Up to 95% of campus rapes go unreported (Source: ACLU)
These staggering statistics make it obvious why it’s necessary to raise awareness and offer free resources to students on high school and university campuses. It is an essential part of reaching younger women and girls who may be unable to access support and resources anywhere else.
Have Awareness Building Campaigns on Social Media
Ending gender based violence is not only an issue for women. We need men to be a part of the conversation. Online campaigns help to educate men and women on sexual harassment, assault and abuse without compromising the comfort and safety of women.
Social media campaigns can also provide digestible insights to help men and women grow and thrive.
Partner with Psychologists
This service will provide affordable but professional mental health care for victims of abuse which is so essential to their healing process.
Individual, online and group counselling services will be provided after an initial screening process.
These services will be offered to women from traditionally under-served, marginalized communities.
Consult with Police and other First-Responders
This helps to ensure victims are not re-traumatized throughout the process of reporting and seeking treatment for their abuse.
Like What We Do? Join Us Today
Volunteering your time is an investment which will help us get closer to our goal of creating a future based on equality and safety for all women and girls.
No amount of time is too short. Whether you have 5 mins or 5 days, your time will be an indispensable resource to raise awareness about and contribute to our mission.
Send a message with the subject ‘Volunteer’ if you’re interested in working with us.
These materials will be used in our free workshops and other events.
You can donate:
-Notepads, pens and other stationary items.
-Vegware cups and tea plates.
Send us a message with the subject ‘Donate’ if you’re interested in contributing to our events and workshops.
Make a Financial Contribution
We’d be so grateful for any contribution you’re able to make. No amount is too small. Every dollar will help.
Transparency is so important to us which is why you’ll be able to get updates on how your donations are being used.
Send us a message with the title ‘Donate’ if you’d like to make a financial contribution via cheque or bank transfer.
Become a Shakti Advocate
Shakti Advocates host small social gatherings, called Chariteas, for their co-workers or friends and family in their homes or offices to increase awareness and raise funds.
The events will begin with short presentations (with information provided by UN Women) which will educate attendees on the prevalence of gender based violence, the ways gender based violence keeps women from reaching their full potential and how we plan to move forward to help women thrive despite these heart breaking statistics.
Send us a message with the title “Shakti Advocate” and we’ll send you some information to get you started.