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Tag: Livelihood Creation


Does the Fight for Working Women’s Rights in India Leave Out Informal Workers?


Tata Trusts and Harvard University South Asia Institute (SAI) recently embarked on a collaborative journey in knowledge creation and capacity building for social and economic empowerment in India. The 18-month research project titled, Livelihood Creation in India through Social Entrepreneurship and Skill Development (beginning October 2015) was the first step in this direction. The project focused on three key areas including rural livelihood creation (emphasis on the handicrafts and handloom sectors); educational, social and economic empowerment of women; and science and technology-based interventions for poverty alleviation.

There is consensus that India’s future growth depends in part on addressing the severe current deficit in gender equality. Much work has been done to address this discrimination through legislation, social policy, grass roots organizing, educational targeting, and public sector training. Despite the imperative of higher education as a preparation for engagement in a skill based global economy, only 6% of rural girls make it to college. 46%of Indian girls are still married before they are 18, and 16% experience their first pregnancy before they are 15 years old. At the same time, sexual violence against women continues to be reported at high levels—every third Indian woman between the ages of 15 and 49 years has experienced sexual or physical violence during her lifetime. Women are severely underrepresented in leadership positions in industry, academia, and government.

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Livelihood Creation Profile: Craftizen Foundation


This is part of a series in which we will profile organizations in India who received a Social Innovation grant through the SAI/Tata Trusts project on Livelihood Creation.

thumbnail_CRAFTIZEN ARTISANS IN ODISHA

Craftizen artisans in Odisha

ORGANIZATION DETAILS 

LEADERSHIP

  • Mayura Balasubramanian, Founder and CEO

VISION, MISSION AND BROAD OBJECTIVES 

Vision

To preserve and evolve Indian craft skills so they remain an integral part of our cultural fabric.

Mission

To provide business acumen support to craft groups to enable sustainable livelihoods for Indian artisans.

Broad Objectives

  • Enabling structured, long-term development support to craft groups
  • Building capacity and capability of craft-based organizations to help them scale
  • Reviving patronage of crafts through large scale, sustained interventions
  • Providing market-driven strategies to craft groups
  • Facilitating design development to enhance functionality of craft products

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Livelihood Creation Profile: Freeset Fabrics


This is part of a series in which we will profile organizations in India who received a Social Innovation grant through the SAI/Tata Trusts project on Livelihood Creation.

ORGANIZATION DETAILS

  • Organisation Name: Freeset Fabrics
  • Year Founded: Private Limited Company
  • Year Founded: 2014
  • Locations: Sherpur, Murshidabad, West Bengal
  • Email: design@freesetfabrics.com
  • Contact Number: +91- 7718705887

    Artisans working on ergonomically designed looms

    Artisans working on ergonomically designed looms

  • Website: http://freesetglobal.com/

LEADERSHIP

  • Kerry Hilton, Director
  • Ron Salmon, General Manager
  • Janet Rogers, Designer and Business Consultant

VISION, MISSION AND BROAD OBJECTIVES

Freeset Fabrics’ goal is livelihood creation in poor rural communities of Murshidabad, West Bengal for vulnerable women who would otherwise be at risk of trafficking into prostitution, bonded labour or migration. Their goal is excellence and quality as they compete with other commercial enterprises.

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Livelihood Creation Profile: Kumaun Grameen Udyog


This is part a series of organizations in India who received a Social Innovation grant through the SAI/Tata Trusts project on Livelihood Creation.

 

 

ORGANIZATION DETAILS

  • Organisation Name: Kumaun Grameen Udyog (KGU)
  • Registered As: Section 8 company
  • Year Founded: 1996
  • Locations: Nainital District, Uttarakhand
  • Email: info@kgu.org.in, sarika@kgu.org.in
  • Contact Number: +91-7535977771
  • Website: http://www.kilmora.in/

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SAI concludes Tata Trusts Livelihood Creation project with conference in Delhi


Professor Khanna

Professor Khanna

The Harvard South Asia Institute (SAI), in collaboration with Tata Trusts, concluded the 18-months project on ‘Livelihood Creation In India’ at an event hosted in New Delhi on Jan. 23. Nearly 200 people attended the event at the Taj Mahal Hotel, representing institutions including the World Bank, UNDP, Government of India, IIT Delhi, and many other top academic, corporate and civil society institutions.

The program showcased the work of the ‘Livelihood Creation in India’ project, with a focus on two key areas: Rural Livelihood Creation in the handicrafts and handloom sectors; and Science and Technology-based Social Entrepreneurship.

Dr. Shashank Shah, Visiting Scholar, Harvard Business School and Project Director at SAI, provided an overview to the 18 month project. “This project has involved rigorous research work with over 100 social enterprises across 15 states of India to study the challenges and capacity gaps,” he said. “The Harvard SAI Team and faculty then conducted 5 capacity building workshops with 125 participating enterprises, and 10 webinars involving Harvard faculty and subject experts from India.”

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Q+A: Shashank Shah, Livelihood Creation Project Director


Shashank Shah, left, at a field visit in Lucknow

Shashank Shah, left, at a field visit in Lucknow

For the past 18 months, Shashank Shah has been the Project Director for the SAI-Tata Trusts project on Livelihood Creation, which has just concluded. SAI spoke to Shah about the project and lessons learned.

SAI: Why did this project focus on the theme of livelihood creation? And how were the three tracks chosen?

Shashank Shah: Livelihood is a very big issue in India, given that India has largest population of people below the age of 35, and hence, skill-building and livelihood creation are primary issues and priorities for the government of India. They have reached out to corporations to help in this effort because they have the capacity to contribute, and they are the levers that fuel the economy of the country.

Given the expertise of social entrepreneurship by Professor Tarun Khanna [Director of the Harvard South Asia Institute], they thought it would be the best focus area for this project.

The two focuses of livelihood creation are skill building and social entrepreneurship. Skill building will give jobs to people who need them, and social entrepreneurship will lead to opportunities for self-employment, and also lead to positive social outcomes.

We identified three tracks: First, Rural livelihood creation in the Indian craft sector. This industry is the second-most employing sector in rural India, after agriculture. Rough estimates indicate that around 200 million people depend on the handicraft sector directly or indirectly. So we thought our project could try and create some kind of intervention and would benefit a large number of organizations. We had expertise in Professor Mukti Khaire.

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SAI and Tata Trusts host workshop on women’s rights


Professor Chen

Professor Chen

The Harvard South Asia Institute (SAI), in collaboration with Tata Trusts, hosted an event titled ‘Women’s Economic and Social Rights in India: Exploring New Collaborations and Engagements’ on December 22 in New Delhi. The event showcased the outcome of an eighteen-month project on ‘Livelihood Creation in India’. Padma Bhushan Dr. Ela Bhatt, Founder, SEWA was the Chief Guest for the evening and delivered the keynote address. Martha Chen, Harvard Kennedy School and Jacqueline Bhabha, FXB Director of Research and Professor of the Practice of Health and Human Rights at the Harvard School of Public Health, shared the project findings and outcomes. The event featured the work of organizations that have been supported through grants and mentoring over past, and over 150 people attended.

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Livelihood Creation Profile: Raah Foundation


This is part a series in which we will profile organizations in India who received a Social Innovation grant through the SAI/Tata Trusts project on Livelihood Creation.

ORGANIZATION DETAILS

LEADERSHIP

  • Sarika Kulkarni, Founder Trustee

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Livelihood Creation Profile: Women Weave


This is part a series in which we will profile organizations in India who received a Social Innovation grant through the SAI/Tata Trusts project on Livelihood Creation.

 

 

ORGANIZATION DETAILS

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