It has been only one year since a few groups of Kotabagh area have been associated with The Himalaya Trust. In February 2016, THT started a pilot skill development project in Kotabagh area, Nainital with basic training skills like Beauty and Wellness and Tailoring. The objective was to provide some basic skills to the women of this area with the objective of connecting them with employment or starting their own business.
Initially, it took time to motivate people to become part of the initiative as there was hardly anything that women could feel comfortable with. Confidence was low, moral was down due to household work and so many other problems restricting them to try a new thing. We started with two team members in Kotabagh who regularly had consultation meets with young girls and women and results started coming up in terms of more registration for course than the seats available.
In June 2016, short term courses were organized in 4 centers of Kotabagh area having more than 100 trainees willing to learn the basics of beauty and wellness and tailoring. Though, the course was supported only for 3 months, the outcomes have been very encouraging.
If we calculate the investment on training, a sum of only Rs. 2.5 Lakh was utilized including machinery and tools and by end of October 2016, trained women had made an earning of more than Rs. 1.26 Lakh together within a period of 2 months after completion of basic training.
Understanding the potential of skills and its utilization, now the groups have asked for advanced training courses to make soft toys, know more about designer suits, bag making, etc.
With the support of current donor, Tata Trusts, we have been able to start advance training course with a few women groups and are hoping to take this further with support from other partner organizations.