Empowering rural women through micro-enterprises - an initiative by Tata Power
In a remote village, at the foothills of Sahyadri mountain range is where Bharati lives. She could study only up to 10th standard. After being married at an early age, Bharati’s life was a daily toil of doing household chores a well as working on the farm.
Bharati Uttam Shinde says - ‘After 10th, there was no facility in our village for further studies. In those days, parents would not allow girls to go far for studies. So after my 10th, I was at home for 3 years. After 3 years, I got married.’
Today, Bharati is the Chairperson of the ‘Maval Dairy’, Maharashtra’s first All Women Farmer Producer Company with 1200 women members including 12 Directors.
Like Bharati, there are hundreds of women in remote villages whose lives were stuck in various circle of unemployment and poverty. Realising that women are the true pillars of the community development, Tata Power has initiated flagship projects for women empowerment. With the focus on natural resource management through locally available schemes and Integrated Dairy development project was found ideal to engage and empower women from the villages.
Tata Power engaged ALC India as a development partner. an inept feasibility study was conducted in 20 villages. The Tata Power team began organising women’s group. Every village is represented by two prompters as local response persons. These women from rural background where given elaborate training in leadership skill and enterprise management.
The collective strength of village women gave concrete shape to viable, sustaining milk producing company which is owned and managed by 1200 women from women villages.
For the sustainable development of the enterprise, more and more women are being enrolled in a systematic cattle education programme, where they are given access to bank finance, cattle insurance and veterinary doctor on call.
Many women from rural villages work at ‘Dhaaga’ - a micro-enterprise initiated by Tata Power to empower women and improve the socio-economic condition of their families. Several garment centres, fully equipped with machines are set up in nearly 100 villages across 7 states of India. today, more than a 1000 rural women are engaged producing trendy fashion garments and accessories with the label of ‘Dhaaga’. Dhaka also promotes traditional handicrafts. Tata Power further assists in market linkages through exhibition sale, corporate orders, selling on e-commerce platform like Amazon and Okhai.
Dhaaga and Mavel Dairy are modern symbol of socio-economic progress through women empowerment. For Tata Power, it is a continuous journey to achieve inclusive growth of the community and the nation.
Tata Power Limited is an Indian electric utility company based in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India and is part of the Tata Group. The core business of the company is to generate, transmit and distribute electricity.
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