Udita Chadha and Gauri Mahendra worked tirelessly to empower socially low-income community women with a programme called Umeed India.
As part of their FirstLeap Job readiness to women, they have completed 16 cohorts of the programme. The team of teachers approaches the institutions and encourages them to pursue working career after completing studies.
One of the woman participants, Anjali said, “Self-worth sessions have had a lot of impact on me. I have started realising my own worth and I have also started loving and respecting myself. I have stopped comparing myself with others and started strengthening myself.” She is currently working as a Sales Executive with a starting salary of Rs 22,000.
One of the programmes case study has also been published in United National Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).
Another beneficiary Chandrika said, “I learnt how to respond to difficult questions. That it’s okay to be honest and say I don’t know the answer to this, I have to read more about this. The interviewers also said that it is the potential to learn that matters the most, not knowing everything in advance.”
“Through the FirstLeap Job readiness programme we have trained 510 women. Around 43 per cent of women placed in jobs they have received are at the entry level such as sales executive, junior IT recruiter, junior accountant and tele executive. In all, 14 per cent have been given upskilling on core technical skills such as Java, C++, Advanced MS Office Suite etc and 30 per cent are pursuing higher studies such as MBA or MCA, MSC or MA, Statistics, Computer science, English, Biotech etc.
Among the future projects, Udita Chadha said that FirstLeap Job Readiness and Empowerment programme in Commissionerate of Collegiate Education and Government Colleges in Telangana are working on entrepreneurship and empowerment programme for women.
A Pravalika, working as a sales executive with a starting salary of Rs 26,000 said, “Umeed has helped us recognise our talent. In the two-hour sessions, one hour is an explanation and another hour is for activities. All these classes will help us when we get jobs and will help us improve, like how to communicate with managers, co-workers, and how to face an interview, and how to answer their questions.”