PROGRAMS: SOCIO-ECONOMIC UPLIFTMENT FOR URBAN WOMEN
When this program was launched in 2002, it was with the overall objective to strengthen processes to promote economic development of women and to create an environment for social change to improve their quality of life and this way promote their empowerment. The identification and selection phases targeted the destitute and vulnerable that didn’t receive any fair treatment like prostitutes and unmarried mothers.
To achieve this goal 40 Self Helped Groups (SHGs) were formed in 18 local villages, thus covering an area with 11,500 inhabitants. PRAYAS identified based on needs, interest capacity, skills and availability, key women within the villages to form small committees of affinity groups. The frequent interaction with these groups of volunteers enabled the organisation to build up a good relationship and training and introduction of various topics such as leadership, saving and credit and long-term benefits of self-help groups were given to the members with a global goal to strengthen and stabilize the structure of the groups.
Through training on issues including income-generating activities, awareness about health and responsibility within the group the program gained strength. A particular effort was made to support the income-generating activities by promoting the production as well as the distribution by linking the groups with different agencies for marketing and other development issues. Today the program has move into a stage where the income-generating activities has provided the SHGs with savings and the possibility to provide it members with micro credit loans.