A forum to assist women in distress
To provide support and resources, Kintsugi has joined hands with Selligion Praho, a company that designs hybrid computers.
CHENNAI: Not everything that is broken is meant to be mended. But the Japanese know a way or two to set things right. Among them is the concept of Kintsugi. The term means ‘to join with gold’. It explains how broken artwork can be brought together even after a damage. It is a reminder that when things don’t go as planned, one should celebrate the imperfections and embrace them. Inspired by the term and its definition, Project Kintsugi, a start-up that guides women going through divorce and domestic violence, was born.
The brain behind this initiative is Indu Gopalakrishnan, who herself has gone through a judicial separation. She was at a crossroads when there was very little awareness about how to approach a lawyer, how to explain the whole situation, and what to expect during the first hearing. Backed by her friends and family, she got through the legal battle. “I realised that because of the stigma and lack of knowledge when a situation comes, people don’t know where to go. It gets very overwhelming,” shares Indu.
After her legal process, she started a support group. “I thought I would be that person to help women, to clarify their queries, understand what they are going through, make them feel less lonely about the whole thing,” she says. Started as pro bono in 2019, the initiative is in its transformation phase. Incorporating it as a company in November 2022, the project offers a one-on-one service and helps women get in touch with lawyers and therapists.
A step forward
Indu mentions that during these sessions, women feel lost sometimes and seek validation. She shares, “Sitting at the opposite end of the table, I can look at the whole situation in an unbiased way, and help them reach a set of professionals whom I know, interacted with and can vouch for.”
To provide support and resources, Kintsugi has joined hands with Selligion Praho, a company that designs hybrid computers. The collaboration is for the Mitra Partnership programme, which helps these women to be financially independent. Under the scheme, a code will be given to the members of the programme. Using this, potential customers can purchase computers at an affordable price. “Mitra programme is more like a sales programme where you get a commission for the sales that you make. Without having to invest in it or buy the products in advance,” she explains.
Apart from a corporate tie-up, Kintsugi also hosts events like mother-daughter meet-ups, bringing women together to share what they are going through, to cope with infidelity and domestic violence. Having helped 60-odd women, the company has also opened doors for men to share their feelings and has helped around 10 of them. “I started with one gender to get things in place and then expand and move on to setting up something for men because I think it needs more of my involvement time and energy to gain their trust,” shares Indu.
Indu believes that though people are coming forward and considering divorce as an option, there is a social stigma and fear surrounding it. The awareness is not strong enough to beat the taboo. In the process of sharing knowledge about divorce and working towards bringing down the negativity related to the term, Project Kintsugi is operating to make lives better.
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