“I was idle and shy , and speak less. I seldom speak with people even now. I was introduced to LCPNP through VRC Pondicherry. I received the artificial jewel making training. Through this I was able to meet other people and come out of shyness a bit.
says salpana Devi
GROUP INCOME GENERATION PROGRAMME FOR WOMEN WITH DISABILITIES
About the Project
The livelihoods project titled: “Increasing equitable access to livelihoods and employment for people with disabilities in India” is one of the flagship programmes of Leonard Cheshire funded by the Delegation of the European Union to India since 2016 and completing by June 2019. This project is implemented through 5 implementing partners in Delhi, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu with two specific objectives – 1. Increased access to improved livelihoods and employment for people with disabilities, and 2. Improved employment environment for people with disabilities.
The problem / challenge addressed:
Women with disabilities are facing multiple challenges, stigma and discrimination even within the family, society and at work place. Also, the over protection and unwillingness to support from the family making women with disabilities idle, isolated and remain aloof from social get together. This paves way to lack of confidence because they consider themselves as they fit for nothing, a feel of inferiority in themselves and a feel in themselves that they are only a bane to the family and the society.
The Leonard Cheshire identified and registered women with disabilities with the help of the Project partners through the Livelihoods Resource Centres which are established under the Project. The women with disabilities were assessed to understand their needs and aspirations, counselled to increase their confidence level and provided career guidance on various available livelihoods and employment opportunities.
As a result, the women with disabilities expressed their interest to undergo self-employment trainings and acquired skills in artificial jewels and palm leaf products making under the project.
Under group income generation activity, the Project facilitated and supported with Seed money to start artificial jewels making at Pondicherry and palm leaf product making at Minjur, Tamilnadu. Initially, the beneficiaries were joining the group with their parents or care takers and later, they started joining the group on their own which proved their first level of independency.
The project observed that the confidence level of these beneficiaries improved. They purchased a low cost smart phone to search new designs, models and to understand the latest market trends. Hence, their income level increased from no income to average Rs.350 – 500 per day by just spending 3-4 hrs in a day and by using their acquired skills, talent, creativity and by marketing their products locally. Some of them are providing training to normal people by charging nominal fee as an additional income.
Now, their livelihoods are enhanced. They are respected in the society and by the family. Their social behaviour, attitude, personal development has also changed a lot.
“Both the group initiatives, artificial jewellery making as well as palm products making are really encouraging mainly from two perspectives. One is the promotion of rural livelihoods, especially for women with disabilities and secondly, the engagement of local organisations in providing training, professional mentorship and marketing support. These organisations ensure that the qualities of these handmade products are maintained so that the beneficiaries get good value for money. These activities have given marvellous opportunities for women with disabilities to economically contribute to their families.” – Ms. Revathy Rugmini, Regional Representative for Asia, Leonard Cheshire
“It was my joy when I happened to these ladies creating beautiful and elegant jewellery and colorful products of palm leaf. I get myself refreshed beyond the tired hectic travel once i see their happy faces. And they do wear and see in the mirror to see how beautiful it looks. The women with palm leaf in hand discuss with me on the color and combinations during my follow up visits, they show their products and ask my comments. I happened to see the joy and ecstasy in all faces when the first set of jewellery was purchased by a NLC staff and at a good price. The women with palm leaf in their hand do their work merrily doing creative works, choosing and working with rare combinations of colors and models that could fetch and attract a good price. There's a mark of pride and joy in their faces when they earned their first income. It marked a overall achievement and a satisfaction for myself and my team to see them sustain on their own. Thanks to my organisation and the donor for the giving this joy.” – Ms. C. Chanemouga Priya, Project Manager, LCPNP EU LRC, Cuddalore, Tamilnadu
“I am a school dropout and lost my right leg during an accident. Nearly 18 yrs I remained isolated. I was introduced to LC Project Nagapattinam through a service provider at Minjur. The first hope and confident I placed on them was when I was taken to a assessment camp for providing artificial limb a year and half ago. I was happy to see me again walking and come out of home. I joined the training on palm leaf product supported by LC Project Nagapattinam with others. Now I have acquired a skill and able to earn. I have gained confidence that I can support myself. I come on my own without any support and head this group on palm leaf product. I feel happy and blessed that I was recognised by LCPNP and many thanks to them. I pray and wish many more support and reach to many disabled people in rural areas has to be given and I sincerely wish the team their good service which has to be reached to many rural disabled.” – Anandhi, the Project beneficiary, Minjur
“I was idle and shy , and speak less. I seldom speak with people even now. I was introduced to LCPNP through VRC Pondicherry. I received the artificial jewel making training. Through this I was able to meet other people and come out of shyness a bit. I love to make these jewels since it relaxes my mind. I was supported by LCPNP and I undertake jewel making in a group. I am happy to do this work. I sell these jewels to NLC staff at good prices. Thanks for LCPNP for recognizing my need and extending support.”
– Kalpana Devi, a special home resident and the Project beneficiary, Pondicherry
“I am a school a drop out and was idle at home. I am short and rarely come out due to fear that I been crushed during travel by bus or auto. I was introduced to LCPNP through VRC Pondicherry. I underwent artificial jewel making training and now I do and sell jewels of my own. I have created lot of new models of jewels which of great interest to me. I earn now and support my family with this income. I feel overwhelmed with joy for the support extended by LCPNP.” – John Claude, the Project beneficiary, Pondicherry