About AeSha!

AeSha for Friendships Foundation is a not-for-profit social mesh wielding human efforts in the space of gender through research-based developmental practice.

We aim to foster self-motivated and agency-driven cultures of work that enhance capabilities for everyday negotiations and enrichment. Our programmes facilitate the betterment of the quality of life of marginalised communities through capacity enhancement, sustainable livelihoods, psychosocial support, assistive education, civic engagement and realisation of fundamental rights.  

Our team

Syeda asia

Director - Strategy and Grassroots Initiatives

Syeda Asia is currently a research scholar at the Department of Sociology, Delhi School of Economics. Her research areas are in the field of organisational sociology, education, entrepreneurship and livelihood. She has worked for education policy implementation as a Gandhi Fellow in rural India following which she has been collaborating with Rishi Valley Institute for Educational Resources – Krishnamurti Foundation India for their faculty enrichment programmes. Asia is a founding member of LEARN, an initiative in life skills education and entrepreneurship development in India. She has been contributing to upGrad, an organisation in EduTech as Senior Associate – Content. 

Asia’s work with rural women is focused on livelihood and community leadership. Her experience in setting up institutional structures in conflict regions brings indigenous methodologies of public provisioning to the forefront. She was given the Emerging Scholars Award for Research 2019 at the 19th International Conference on Knowledge, Culture and Change in Organisations, Canada. Her research and projects in education and social entrepreneurship have received recognition at various international platforms in Germany, France and the United States.    

At AeSha, Asia hopes to contribute to organizational development and grassroots action, guided by values of community ownership and reformative work cultures. 

Email: director@aeshafoundation.org

shivangi gupta

Director - Programme Design and Research

Shivangi Gupta is currently pursuing her doctorate on the families of the incarcerated in India from Virginia Tech University, United States of America. Shivangi’s passion to work on this project comes from her work on a research study aimed at understanding the determinants of psychosocial health among children of incarcerated parents, conducted at Jamia Millia Islamia University. She has led research projects in the field of public health, child rights, gender and sexuality and relationships within family.

Shivangi finds meaning in being actively involved in dissemination practices through workshops in school and higher education on various issues of social and political significance through the lens of intersectional feminism. She has been a practising psychotherapist, having engaged in projects that document emerging issues in counselling practices paving the way for a field-driven improvement in the discipline of Psychology and Education.

Email: director@aeshafoundation.org

Vanshika Singh

Director - Public Engagement and Advocacy

Vanshika Singh is currently pursuing her doctorate in Human Geography at the National University of Singapore. Her research lies at the intersection of understanding access to water, social relations and different practices of food production. She has practiced research at Hyderabad Urban Lab, an action and research organisation formed on the principles of the Right to the City. As part of the multi-disciplinary Tacit Urban Research Network (TURN), Vanshika’s work has focused on deepening contemporary understanding of informality and labour in Indian cities. She has heralded projects on understanding community infrastructures in informal settlements and how these most affected womens health, mobility and ability to work.

Vanshika takes a deep interest in public scholarship and public exhibitions. She has worked closely with the National Museum and the Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts. Bridging her love for food and a desire to cultivate an understanding of water, she is a part of the founding team for the initiative, Grow My Crop, a collective enterprise of farmers, permaculturists, and food enthusiasts in Village Bhalaut in Haryana which believes in supporting crop diversification, less water-intensive farming methods, organic cultivation along with generating dignified incomes while contributing to food and nutrition security.

Email: director@aeshafoundation.org

Aashna Gutgutia

Director - Data Management and Research Analytics

Aashna Gutgutia is a Data Analyst with the Business Strategy Team of Global University Systems, where she specialises in finding marketable insights in the Educational sector. She has done her Bachelors in Mathematics from Delhi University after which she pursued a Post Graduate Course in Data Science and Engineering from Great Lakes University. Aashna has been a Young India Fellow from Ashoka University. She has worked with the Centre for Policy Research on Delhi Government’s Education Initiatives as a Research Analyst. She has been responsible for the analysis of the impact of Teacher Training programs introduced in government schools across the city.

Her work with AeSha is driven with the vision to broaden the understanding of data implications in the field of gender studies and development practice. She hopes to contribute to building a culture of data-driven decision-making in the social sector through socially sensitive and democratic organisational practices.

Email: director@aeshafoundation.org

Lakshay Talwar

Director - Media and Community Outreach

Lakshay Talwar is pursuing his Master’s from the Department of Sociology, Delhi School of Economics. He has done his Bachelors in Political Science from Kirori Mal College, University of Delhi. He has been associated with multiple development organisations and social impact projects, working at the intersection of education, health and gender. His research in the development sector has focused on creating strategic waste management interventions and carrying out research-based advocacy projects in the field of gender and sexuality. He has worked as an Education Support Fellow with Make A Difference (MAD), where he was involved in teaching and capacity building of underserved schools and communities in Central Delhi.

Lakshay takes deep interests in organising politically and socially around issues of gender, sexuality, sustainable development and social justice. He has been involved in bringing reforms in everyday experiences of gender by working towards mainstreaming of gender and social positioning-based responsive institutional policies and practices in schools and higher educational institutions.

Lakshay’s work with AeSha is driven with the vision to bring about a constructive transformation in the everyday experiences of gender and social identifiers through sustainable developmental practices. 

Email: director@aeshafoundation.org