|Hirbaiben Ibrahimbhai Lobi YouTube - Narendra Modi
|Empowering women in Siddi community
|Physical Stats & More
|in centimeters- 170 cm
in meters- 1.70 m
in feet & inches- 5’ 7”
|in kilograms- 60 kg
in pounds- 132 lbs
|Salt & Pepper
|• Mahila Vikas Foundation (Founder)
• Bharatiya Agro Industries Foundation (BAIF) (Member)
• Aga Khan Foundation (Member)
|Awards, Honours, Achievements
|• Samman Patra by Gujarat Agriculture University in Junagadh in 2001, 2007, and 2012
• Women’s World Summit Foundation’s Prize for Women’s Creativity in Rural Living in 2002
• Jankidevi Bajaj Puraskar for Outstanding Woman Rural Entrepreneur in 2006
• CNN IBN Real Heroes' Award Winner 2010
• Padma Shri in 2023
|Jambur village in Talala tehsil of Gir Somnath district in Gujarat
|Talala, Junagadh, Gujarat
|Siddi community of African descent
|Relationships & More
|Her husband was a labourer who supported her during her social work.
|She has two sons and one daughter.
|Her parents died when she was 14 years old.
Some Lesser Known Facts About Hirabai Ibrahim Lobi
- Hirabai Ibrahim Lodi is a social activist based in Junagadh, Gujarat who has worked tirelessly for the betterment of women in the Siddi community and has helped more than 700 women and children to improve their living standards. She was awarded Padma Shri in 2023 for her service to the community.
- She was raised by her grandmother as her parents passed away when she was 14 years old.
- She could not attend school or college due to her poor background; however, she displayed a strong sense to learn and increase her knowledge.
- She got married at a young age and started working with her husband on a small piece of land of 0.5 hectares. The couple had a debt of Rs 1 lakh rupees; however, she did not sell it and started looking for different occupations to earn more money other than the traditional occupation of Siddis of cutting the wood in the forest and selling it.
- She heard regular radio telecasts with her husband and came to know about organic composting. She got interested and researched the process of making organic feed.
- She produced 160 bags in her first year and managed to find a buyer for her product despite facing several difficulties.
- In the following year, she put up a team of 10 women including herself and produced 500 bags of organic compost, which helped her to earn a little profit.
- She went on to make 9 teams of 95 women who work with her and produce organic feed. She also helped them create farms where fruits were produced for commercial use.
- In an interview, she said that she would train any women who want to make organic compost and would retain those who are ready to study as well.
- As she belonged to a family of illiterate women, she used it as fuel to initiate education reforms among Siddi women.
- She held regular talks with different women in her community and explained the importance of education to them.
- There was a primary school in her school Jambur which had very low attendance and was in shambles. When the school teacher asked for her help to run the school effectively, she organised meetings with the community which resulted in an increased number of children attending the school.
- She has set up various schools in her locality.
- She became a member of the Aga Khan Foundation and later joined Bharatiya Agro Industries Foundation (BAIF) to know about the activities conducted by these NGOs and the functioning of such organisations.
- In 2002, she got $ 500 as the prize money for the Women’s World Summit Foundation’s Prize for Women’s Creativity in Rural Living, which she used to develop her village and did not keep a single penny to herself.
- In 2004, she founded Mahila Vikas Foundation to make the Siddi women aware of financial literacy and different government schemes aimed at improving the financial condition of women.
- She helped many women to open bank accounts and save money. She went to banks with women who found it hard to deal with the bank officials and fill out the paperwork.
- She said in an interview that she saved the Gir forest from being cut by helping women do different work than the traditional work of woodcutting. She said,
I have not grown trees in the forest, but I have saved the forest from being cut.”
- She also promoted health and hygiene practices among the Siddi women. She requested they practice birth control to give a better life to their children.
- In 2023, during the felicitation ceremony of Padma Shri, she became emotional and thanked the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi for choosing her name and said that no one knew them and bothered about them until Modi gave her this prestigious award.
- She said to Modi that she was extremely happy to receive this award. She said,
Mere pyaare Narendra Bhai, apne hamari jholi khushiyon se bhar di”
- While receiving Padma Shri from the Indian President Droupadi Murmu, she put both of her hands on Murmu’s shoulders and blessed her.
- In an interview, when she was asked about her motivation for doing such dedicated social service, she said that she could not study due to her humble background; however, she made up her mind that she would enable every woman in her family and community to study and progress. YouTube- NDTV India
- While talking to a journalist who visited her village, she said that she dreamt that Siddi people would do better jobs than labouring. She said,
I dream that not all Siddi will be labourers and that one day a young person will knock on my door and ask for help to become an engineer”
- Her social work has been awarded by various organisations and important people like Mukesh Ambani and Amitabh Bachchan.
- She has helped more than 700 women and children through her social work.