New tailoring unit for rural women

A new tailoring unit will increase livelihood opportunities for rural women around Sultanpur in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. The unit was initiated by two Women on Wings partners: FICCI Ladies Organization Lucknow chapter in collaboration with Kshitij Education & Rural Development. It is a wonderful example of collaborating in the creation of social impact, completely managed by women.

Village adoption
The tailoring unit, which is supported by Liberty Shoes, was inaugurated on February 22, 2021 after the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the three years’ ‘village adoption program’. The partnership focusses on providing skill development and employment opportunities to women in the Village Poore Lal Shah and all adjoining rural areas of Jaisinghpur Block, Sultanpur. Federation of India’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry Ladies Organization (FICCI FLO) Lucknow chapter collaborated with Kshitij Education & Rural Development (Kshitij) before in its efforts of creating livelihood opportunities for women in rural areas. The new three years’ ‘village adoption program’ and the opening of a tailoring unit, brings the collaboration to a next level.

Economic and social empowerment
Kshitij works on health, hygiene and sanitation in remote rural areas to address women health and hygiene issues on a larger platform. To realize sustainable economic and social empowerment of the rural women, Kshitij also started working with Self Help Groups (SHG) that already produced handicrafts and agro based products. Each SHG consists of ± 10 rural women. Kshitij’s founder is Ms. Pratibha Singh, a social entrepreneur from Lucknow, with ambitious growth plans. She dreams to engage 980 SHGs in the region under one umbrella so that her enterprise can give maximum benefits to the marginal farmers and the SHG women and create sustainable businesses at SHG level.

More employment opportunities
Next to the new tailoring unit, employment opportunities for rural women can be found in incense sticks making and growing of lemon grass. For the latter, a proposal has been made between Lucknow’s Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (CIMAP), FICCI FLO Lucknow and Kshitij to set up a cluster of 100 women farmers who will be registered under the CIMAP training scheme. FICCI FLO Lucknow has come forward to initiate the setting up of a distillation unit which will help in supporting this cluster project.

Successful collaboration with partners
Kshitij and Women on Wings started collaborating in July 2020 after an introduction of Ms. Puja Garg, Chairperson FICCI FLO Lucknow chapter. Women on Wings and FICCI FLO started collaborating in May 2020. FICCI FLO, as the name suggests, focusses on women entrepreneurs in specific. FLO’s role as the Womens’ Chamber of Commerce, is to connect the dots between Women on Wings and the social entrepreneurs through its bandwidth of 17 FLO chapters Pan India. This is in sync with FLO’s mission to work towards sustainable livelihood for women’s economic empowerment. Through these 17 chapters, one being the before mentioned Lucknow chapter, FLO represents 8,000 female entrepreneurs and professionals.