Kerala's 'Kudumbashree School' Opens

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM:  Kerala's all-women self-help group "Kudumbashree' today opened a special academic platform to impart training for its 43 lakh members targeting their socio-cultural, educational and overall personality development. Titled 'Kudumbashree School', the platform would give training to its members, majority of them ordinary homemakers, in personality and skill development, leadership and creative abilities. 

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan today inaugurated the initiative at a function held at Puliyarakkonam near here. In a Facebook post, Vijayan said Kudumbashree should be able to extend support not only to its volunteers but also to the society as a whole.

"Beyond the targets of poverty eradication and empowerment of its members, Kudumbashree should be able to grow as a positive gathering in the respective localities," he said.

According to official sources, the school project would be implemented through the government's informal education programme being implemented centring 'Ayalkoottams' (neighbourhood groups) under Kudumbashree.

Kudumbashree has a three-tier structure for its women community network, with Neighbourhood Groups (NHGs) at the lowest level.

'Pravesanotsavam' (admission festival) was held in various parts of the state at the 'Ayalkoottam' level to mark the launch of the initiative, they said.

Experts from different fields and retired teachers would  impart training for Kudumbashree members under the programme and six resource persons from each ward have been selected for its smooth conduct.

Kudumbashree Executive Director S Harikishore said as many as 1.90 lakh teachers would be part of the training programme in 19,854 wards across the state.

A two-hour training would be imparted to the members for six weeks during the meeting of respective 'ayalkoottams', he said adding that different departments would be coordinated to implement the initiative. Those who successfully complete the training would be given certificates, he said.

At the macro level, the 'Kudumbashree School' project is aimed at creating awareness among the grass root level women about their social responsibilities and improve their standard of living through knowledge, the official added.

Launched in 1998 as a poverty eradication mission by the state government to wipe out poverty through community action, Kudumbashree has tried its hand in various fields, ranging from pickle-making to IT business to empowering women households in the state.