In Jan-Feb 2019, the Women’s Leadership Program (WLP) championed by Lata Patil, a project of Indians for Collective Action (ICA) was invited by Self-employed Women’s Association (SEWA), a trusted and well-established NGO in Ahmedabad to conduct a workshop on transformational leadership to its selected members. In this partnership between the two organization, the predominant program aim was to
- strengthen the capabilities of rural women micro-entrepreneurs in the community
- increase the financial sustainability of their enterprises
- fostering of personal growth of these rural women
The candidates were all from low-income grassroots communities, with an aspirational to participate in the workshop, full of dreams for themselves and for their businesses.
The picture above shows one group of women selected by SEWA to be trained. All are Coordinators of SEWA Programs, managing smaller units of businesses and have been members of SEWA for at least 10 years. They had first been trained at SEWA’s Manager’s School and over the years risen to the position of Coordinators, each one overseeing several small business owners involved in crafts, animal husbandry, village veterinary help, bore well repair, catering, small retail outlets, etc. A few them were college graduates, speaking a smattering of English, but most had high-school-level educations or less. All spoke and understood Hindi and Gujarati.