IASEW students work in many different trades and often must augment their skills in order to access better employment opportunities.
In response to this need, IASEW began the Skill Education and Communication Centres programme in 2008. Located in community spaces in order to mitigate students’ transportation costs and lost working hours, the Centres assess what skills SEWA members have and then deliver programmes that will update or augment these skills. Programmes augment skills in traditional areas like incense rolling and kitemaking. Women also learn new skills in tailoring, beauty care, and making soft toys and jewelry.
Women who participate in these programmes have seen an increase in their employment rates from 26 to 50 per cent and have doubled their monthly income. They have also learned to save, with an average reported savings of Rs. 1,300.
Participants have also reported increased confidence and a sense of accomplishment, especially among younger, first-time earners.