Skill Development

A large number of tribal families in Attappady remain immersed in poverty. Those families residing in remote tribal villages have few means of livelihood or income. Swami Vivekananda Medical Mission conducted Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA) meetings and socioeconomic survey in about 20 villages in Attappady in 2013.The appraisal revealed that many young girls and boys had dropped out of school at different classes. Many of those who had completed schooling had not gone further in their studies. Tribal men and women did not have additional skills to look for employment and income generation. A lot of these young men and women remain unemployed and without any income. More skills imply a better job and a better pay. The need for a large scale skill development programme involving all villages of Attappady was imperative in removing poverty and improving quality of life and health.

Swami Vivekananda Medical Mission has involved in skill development initiatives for tribal women and youth for the last many years. The trust had organised one day vocational training programmes for members of Self Help Groups in successive years in 2011, 2012 and 2013.Training was given in soap making, agarbathi making etc. In 2014, a one month training programme on making food products was held in collaboration with Centre for Management Development (CMD), Thiruvananthapuram from 5th June to 15th July. All the candidates who completed the course were given certificates of training.

In 2015, the trust organized 5 Micro Entrepreneur Development Programmes (MEDP) with financial assistance from NABARD. Training was conducted for Garment making, Doll making, Beautician course, Jewellery making and Sari Printing. Each course was attended by 30 women from SHGs. Many of the trainees have started income generation by starting commercial units based on the skill obtained.

Sri Balachandran Smaraka Janavaibhava Kendram, a multipurpose skill development centre was inaugurated on 18th October 2015.The centre was established in revered memory of Sri M.Balachandran, former Vice-President and founder trustee of the mission who passed away on 18th October 2014.There is a Garment making and training centre at the Kendram which gives regular training to about 15-20 women. This centre is run with support from Rotary Club of Coimbatore Sai City. This centre is now affiliated to National Skill India Mission of Bharat Sevak Samaj, under the Government of India.

A coaching centre for PSC examinations for SC/ST students has been started at this centre form July 2016.

We plan to start a career and course guidance centre based in this Kendram by the end of this academic year, to facilitate smooth admissions for tribal students aiming to go for higher courses after 10th or 12th classes. Regular coaching classes for tribal students in 9th, 10th and 11th classes are also in the planning stage. This year we have guided 10 tribal students for joining a one year Fashion technology course in ITC, Mayannoor.

The Janavaibhava Kendram will host a multitude of skill development courses for the tribal youth and women. It is also proposed to offer placement services for the trained candidates in the near future.

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