Some of the most devastating human rights violations worldwide are committed against women and girls. Women’s safety is a global issue. In India, the male-dominated nature of public spaces adds to the problem. But social entrepreneurs there are refusing to accept inequality and traditional mindsets. They’re tackling violence against women with the help of technology.
In 2012, the world held its breath as tens of thousands of Indian activists – both women and men – stood united in demands for justice for a young woman brutally gang-raped on a bus in Delhi who later died from the trauma she suffered during the attack. The country was galvanized, and looked on the brink of a social revolution. The event turned into a touchstone for many young entrepreneurs no longer willing to let violence against women go unchallenged. Indian Founders have worked to tackle the issue by keeping it in the public eye, creating safer cities, and seeking to change the image of women as prey or victims. With technology-driven solutions, they’re demonstrating a vision: sexual violence against women worldwide has to stop.
See for yourself and watch the episode below or on the Website of Deutsche Welle TV.
Elsa Marie D’Silva is the founder and Managing Director of Red Dot Foundation (Safecity), a platform that crowdsources personal experiences of sexual violence and abuse in public spaces. Since Safecity started in December 2012, it has become the largest crowd map on the issue in India, Kenya, Cameroon and Nepal.
Elsa Marie is an alumna of the US State Department’s Fortune Program, a fellow with Rotary Peace, Aspen New Voices and Vital Voices, and a BMW Foundation Responsible Leader. She is listed as one of BBC Hindi’s 100 Women. Moreover, she has won the Female Entrepreneur of the Year Award launched by Dušan Stojanović (European Angel Investor of the Year 2013) and the SheThePeople’s Digital Woman Award in Social Impact.
Prior to Safecity, she spent 20 years in the aviation industry, where she worked with Jet Airways and Kingfisher Airlines. In her last role in aviation, she was Vice President Network Planning.