Bala Vikasa Provides 100 Widows Training in Advanced Tailoring Skills to Encourage Entrepreneurship with Manos Unidas Grant
As part of a program to empower 100 poor widows under a grant from the Spanish organization Manos Unidas, Bala Vikasa has provided 100 women from 40 villages of 4 districts training in advanced tailoring, in 6 batches of 8-day upskilling programs from last October through December. The women, who gained an improved understanding of advanced tailoring methods and skills, strengthened their business by installing and utilizing advanced sewing machines.
“I learned basic tailoring skills 3 years ago under a government scheme and established a tailoring unit and earning Rs 3,000-4,000 Rupees per month, but recently my customers who are seeking more fashionable designs and ready to pay extra, went elsewhere as I neither had the skills nor an advanced machine. I was humiliated by my family and asked to work as a daily-wage farm laborer to make more money. At one point I was so depressed that I contemplated selling my sewing machine and closing my unit. This training has provided a boon of an opportunity. I feel confident that I can increase my income and earn Rs 6,000 per month,” says Lavanya, a young widow from Jammikunta village.
We also conducted a Counselling Session for 99 Young Widows below the age of 30, last October, to create awareness on the basic human rights and its violation in their regard. The widows shared their life experiences after losing their partners. Our project staff provided them training on stress management and pain-relieving techniques such as Neuro-Linguistic Programming.
“I tried to commit suicide more than 6 times as I was unable to provide for my children. After attending the pain-relieving session I have decided to live more confidently. I can manage and cope with the stress. I learned that life always changes and we should be courageous enough to face all challenges. I will teach my children the same,” says Swapna, a young widow from Hasanparthy village.