Enriching to work with social enterprises in India

Dutch Women on Wings’ experts who contribute to the co-creation of jobs for women in rural India are in turn enriched by the Indian entrepreneurs with social and sustainable knowledge and insights. Like Human Resources expert, Joke Hartlief-de Vries, who recently worked with the management of Women on Wings’ business partner Grameena Vikas Kendram in Visakhapatnam, in the state of Andra Pradesh, on improving its Performance Management.

Getting inspired
Grameena Vikas Kendram (GVK) is a Society for Rural Development which aims for a transformed world where self-reliant communities live in harmony with each other and nature. Its work encompasses economic, social & ecological sustainability. Says Joke Hartlief-de Vries, expert in Human Resources: “GVK is working on making agriculture more sustainable, growing several products on the same land, generating other forms of income for farmers. It was great to talk to the team. All are so driven to really make a difference. It is extremely inspiring to see social enterprises like GVK working towards improving so many issues, like the air pollution and the living conditions of farmers.”

Reciprocal effect
Besides creating jobs for women in rural India, the work of Women on Wings has a much broader impact. Independent research among experts and entrepreneurs performed by Prastut Consulting shows a reciprocal effect: The experts support social entrepreneurs in India to bring more business to their companies, the entrepreneurs inspire the experts to introduce a social mission in their work in the Netherlands. Continues Joke: “Working a few days with the GVK team on improving the organization, leadership, and performance management, I realized that we may take things for granted in our life in the Netherlands. We have so many opportunities in education and work. It was great to step out again of my own culture and get the opportunity to work with another culture. I may bring my knowledge and experience, but I get so much in return that enriches me and that I can use in my own work in the Netherlands.”

Contributing to gender equality
Since 2017 Joke is one of the experts at Women on Wings who contribute to realizing Women on Wings’ goal to take families in rural India out of poverty through economic development. By sharing their time and talent with Women on Wings’ business partners in India, they co-create extra jobs for women in rural India. A job not only brings additional income to the family, it also empowers and creates a more equal position for women. Since 2017, Joke has worked on multiple HR related assignments in India: one on one workshops with business partners like GVK, Tamul Plates, ROPE International, and the Jharkhand State Livelihood Promotion Society, and in a two days’ CEO Summit with multiple business partners.

Image | Joke at ROPE International