Dada Vaswani Skill Development Institute – Empowering Women, One Skill at a Time!
Updated: Jun 19
Name: Dada Vaswani Skill Development Institute
Mission: To empower women through free skill development courses
Target Audience: Poor and needy women and those in need of upskilling
Location: Manjri & Pimpri (Pune)
Established: December 2021
Contact: Sadhu Vaswani Mission | email@example.com |
Certification Courses Offered:
Baking & Confectionery Course
Basic Computers Course
Certificate Recognition: Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship, Govt. of India
Free skill development courses provided to women from disadvantaged backgrounds.
Certificate enables women start their business and get good jobs.
Training programs designed to enhance employability and entrepreneurship skills.
Experienced trainers guide the students throughout their course duration with focus on both practical skills and personal development.
Examinations conducted to evaluate learning and understanding.
Counselling sessions to encourage financial independence, boost confidence, and foster growth in women.
Supportive environment and in-house opportunities to step into the world of business.
Positive impact seen in the lives of the women and their families.
Dada Vaswani Skill Development Institute (DVSDI), established in December 2021, is dedicated to the cause of ‘Women Empowerment’. To achieve this objective, free skill development courses with certification recognised by the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Govt. of India are being offered to needy women and those that are aiming to upskill themselves. The vision is to improve the lives of these women, increase their chances of employability or entrepreneurship, help them achieve financial independence, and lead a life of dignity and respect.
The Institute operates at 2 locations in Pune, India – Manjri and Pimpri.
In addition to the existing courses, DVSDI is also working towards expanding and offering more skill programmes for women. Also, the construction of a dedicated building for the Skill Development Center is underway.
Dada J.P. Vaswani often said, "Women fashion the soul of a nation. It is a woman’s soul that will lead us upward on."
It is this vision and Dada’s faith in the potential and shakti of women that brought to fruition DVSDI. The Sadhu Vaswani Mission engages in several charitable activities. During these activities, we were faced with one of the stark realities of the so-called 21st century – our women, our sisters and mothers are still living a life of dependency with little or no skills. The pandemic brought to the fore the magnitude of life’s uncertainty. Imagine being a dependent, unskilled woman in such a situation! That’s where DVSDI comes into the picture. Holding on to the vision of the Masters, we created this safe little world for our sisters and mothers who can learn new, employable skills and begin a life that promises them new beginnings.
"It’s never too late to start is what we tell them!” shared an official. “Moreover, even if we were to discount the uncertainty, one thing remains consistent – women build a household and therefore, if they are independent, not only do they contribute to the family but also to the overall development of the home,” the official added.
DVSDI offers courses that hold the possibility to generate income immediately upon completion. The curriculum is meticulously designed to make the participants' job ready and includes both theory and practical. Evaluation is conducted through the process of a formal examination on which the students are marked. Each of the courses has experienced trainers who give personal attention to each student. A batch comprises 12-30 participants.
Baking and Confectionery course trainer, Sunanda Banubakode, sharing her experience said, “We teach them end-to-end process; right from preparation to packaging for sale, everything is included as a part of the training. Another essential aspect is we train them to use cooking gas and not electronic gadgets. Given their financial status, it is inconceivable that they would be able to afford these products. Therefore, we have chosen this method to make sure that they have no roadblocks or investment needed once they complete the course.”
“The course has been engaging and interactive. Students are very receptive and eager to learn. They even go home and try the recipe out only to bring it the next day for tasting and evaluation,” she added.
“Starting out in the business of baking can fetch around INR 20,000/- which is huge for a below-the-poverty-line family. They know the worth of the course and therefore they give it their hundred per cent!” she concludes.
The trainer for the beautician course, Manisha Patil, said, “Should the students diligently complete the course, they will certainly draw a minimum of INR 15,000/- which is enough to meet basic household expenses! We, therefore, blend the learning with a lot of practice so that they can begin their business even from their homes. Beautician services are indispensable and therefore their roles in society too are crucial. We want to make sure that they step in as professionals, not novices.”
The Centers & Its Operations:
DVSDI believes in the holistic growth of women and therefore the Institute coordinators and trainers make sure of a conducive and healthy learning atmosphere. While ensuring discipline, an environment of two-way communication is created where the learner is free to approach and share their feedback. This is a step towards helping them ‘think for themselves’ and build a new life.
Seema Kukreja, Coordinator at the Pimpri Institute said, “There are women who are eager to learn but never got the opportunity. And when they get this platform, I have observed how they come into their own. They just need the chance to bloom, the seeds are already there.”
“All our courses come with extra practice sessions. The students are free to come to the Institute and practise whenever they want to. We make sure that the material they need is always ready in advance. Their eagerness and our efforts go together in achieving success. At the same time, we maintain discipline where the students need to have 80% attendance to get the certificate. This ensures that they just do not carry a paper certificate but have learnt something constructive that can help them grow and flourish,” she added.
Rohini Jagtap, coordinator at the Manjri Institute shared, “This is a rural community and there are countless women who have never stepped out of their homes. This opportunity is liberating for them. Currently, we have underprivileged children studying at the Sadhu Vaswani Gurukul, Manjri. Our skill development batches are conducted for the mothers of these children. These women then through word-of-mouth tell their neighbours and others to join. We have seen so many of these women transform from being meek to confident. The sheer learning of a skill develops their personality and it is a motivation for us to bring in more such women who can make the most of these skills.
Impact and Success Stories:
DVSDI, since its establishment, has created a positive impact in the community. Numerous women have benefited through the course and have even gone on to start their own businesses.
Ashwini Bhondwe, a former learner who has completed the Basic Sewing Operator Course, said, “My husband is very encouraging and supportive; to the extent that he pushed me to achieve something of my own. The background we come from its difficult to even step out of our homes. But the DVSDI comes with its name and reputation and therefore even our families are supportive and send us here to learn. Today, I feel proud that I can contribute to my household purchases and do not have to ask my husband for small things. It has improved the way the people around me, see me. Earlier, they would think of me as someone who knows nothing; today their perception of me has changed.”
Today, Ashwini works at the DVSDI and stitched pouches for the Sadhu Vaswani Mission’s sevas. She earns a decent income from this employment and also runs her own business and gets orders for other stitching assignments at home.
Rajashree Dhaktode, another former learner of both the Beautician and Basic Sewing Operator Course said, “I can bring my child here with me. That lifts a major burden off my shoulders. While he is under my watch and care, I can continue to work and earn income.”
Rajashree, too has found employment at DVSDI and feels more confident and independent.
Challenges in the Journey:
The vision of DVSDI is to bring such confidence and empowerment to many more women in need. But we do encounter a few roadblocks in realising this aspiration to its fullest potential. But as Revered Dada Vaswani says, “Problems are stepping stones but not stopping stones.”
Overhead costs: Running a full-fledged skill development institute involves numerous overhead expenses such as maintenance, electricity, and administrative costs.
Trainers' remuneration: Hiring and retaining experienced trainers requires financial resources. Ensuring fair compensation for trainers is crucial to maintain the quality of education and sustain the institute's operations.
Materials for courses: The Center provides the entire raw material required for baking and confectionery and cooking classes. None of the material is to be brought by the learner. This is essential for practical training and these involve huge costs.
Equipment for courses: Courses like basic computers and tally require the students to have computers. Maintenance of this incurs costs and therefore adds to the expense of the Institute.
Need for counselling sessions: The background from which the women come requires a mindset shift and need guidance in different areas including career and financial understanding. Additionally, there are several mental barriers that need to be broken for them to realise their worth. All this calls for counselling sessions and certainly adds to the costs.
Contribute to the Cause:
DVSDI, in its earnest effort, to bring empowerment to women from disadvantaged groups seeks your generous support.
Donate generously to this cause and build the life of our mothers and sisters who have been deprived of their rightful opportunities for generations.
Our efforts and your support can create a ripple effect and bring about equality, and financial independence, and promise a life of dignity to the women of our society.