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415 L St NW, Apt 1036
Washington, DC 20001
United States



Network Champion: Main point of contact for this organization. Maintains this page and ensures organization makes the most of network membership.
Mariana Botero

Added on: Oct 23, 2019

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Shakti is a mobile-based intervention that empowers women with low levels of literacy to enforce their rights, and access legal and public health resources.

Shakti provides women with low levels of literacy with the information they need to recognize when their rights are violated, to inform themselves of existing options, and to seek help. To do this, we curate legal information, plans of action, and a directory of existing resources. We then simplify this information into lay people’s terms, translate it into local languages, and make it available through means that our target beneficiaries can access and use. 

The first version of our platform is a toll-free number. By calling, women can use the menu pad on their mobile phone to navigate our Interactive Voice Response System (IVR). They will hear a series of automated messages and options, among which they can choose and listen to the most relevant.

Our platform design caters to our target beneficiaries’ abilities and lifestyles. It uses colloquial vocabulary, is conveyed in local languages, is created and reviewed by lawyers to ensure it is accurate, and can be accessed repeatedly at any time. Since callers are navigating automated messaging, their personal story remains anonymous, and information will be unbiased. 

The IVR is not a helpline. Instead, it is a one-stop resource to seek relevant and useful information for callers seeking relief from their situations. It does not require callers to speak to anyone or to reveal personal information, so it is unbiased and non judgemental. We often compare our IVR platform to a Google for women with low levels of literacy. 


Mariana Botero

I am a co-founder of Shakti, a nonprofit that breaks down barriers faced by women with low levels of literacy to accessing legal information and existing resources in India. We do this by simplifying legal information and conveying it through audio and video via mobile phones.

United States