MADURAI: What has Bollywood star Katrina Kaif got to do with Usilampatti? A lot now. The actress, along with her mother Sussanne Turquotte and partner Jesse Tincher, runs a social service programme called SHE (Sanitation, Health and Education) to eradicate female infanticide.
Katrina may not be making frequent visits to the place but she was instrumental in ra­ising lot of sponsorship for the programme, undertaken by Relief Projects of India (RPI), an organisation started by Tincher and Turquotte after the 2004 tsunami.
She was here at Alagusirai village in April 2010 for the launch of ‘Little Darlings,’ a programme to provide skill development facilities for disabled toddlers, at Mercy Ho­me, run by Claretian Missionary Fathers. RPI began its work in the region by associating itself with the Home. Turquotte, who was in Madurai to oversee the work on a ‘SHE centre’ at Thotappanaickanur near Usilampatti, told Express that SHE conducted several programmes for ante natal and pre natal mothers, as­sisting them obtain government benefits, medical care, supply of nutritional supplements and vitamins, besides organising evening tuitions and study centres for village children.
“Our future goals are constructing a SHE centre, which would expand the above pr­ogrammes to the Usilampatti area, and we also plan to set up a pre-school for neglected differentlyabled children,” she stated.
Tincher said that the centre would wo­rk towards educating the people about the evils of female infanticide.