After being inaugurated by the Lieutenant Governor in the first week of this month the Mission Director, JKRLM, Dr Syed Sehrish Asgar today inaugurated the workshop for the functionaries implementing the ‘SAATH’ program here.The ‘SAATH' initiative is a rural enterprise acceleration program for the Self Help Group (SHG) women in J&K. Under the program both the intermediaries and prospective entrepreneurs would initially be trained for taking their businesses to the next level of success.On the occasion the MD , JKRLM said that the intention and purpose of the program is that rural women are benefitted tremendously. She said that this new initiative is a step above our routine functioning. She observed that such a program has been fashioned for capacity building of all the stakeholders including JKRLM functionaries and the rural SHG women for making this program a success.The MD also impressed upon the trainees to take full advantage of the program so that they have complete awareness about the queries of these women entrepreneurs. She asked them to be the role models for these women so that they would excel in the enterprises they are involved in. She said that this program has an objective of creating successful entrepreneurs out of small time, self employed, rural women.Dr Sehrish further asked them that lot of efforts had been invested on part of JKRLM to strategize, evolve and rollout this program.
She mentioned that the best trainees from India SME Forum had been arranged to make best out of this initiative. She encouraged them to learn more so that this would happen to be watershed for the future generation of entrepreneurs. The MD apprised that by a scientific method it has been worked out that our registered SHGs has a potential of creating employment for 35000 persons.She made out that in the whole scheme of things the role of these intermediaries is eminent as they themselves, if not entrepreneurs are going to produce best entrepreneurs out of SHG members. She elucidated that this program has a potential to turn the fortunes of the rural women if taken in right earnest on its implementation.The Additional MD, Riyaz Ahmad Beigh applauded the whole team of the mission and that of India SME Forum for chalking out the modalities for this program. Giving details, he said that this program would continue for two days here in the offline mode and thereafter in the online mode for further 9 weeks.It was also revealed that some 8000 applications have been received by the mission for the SAATH initiative, out of which 5000 women would be given training in the workshops by the India SME Forum. Moreover 500 women would be selected for the intensive training course out of whom100 women would be chosen for scaled -up mentoring.The Forum representative also gave out that these women would be imparted sectoral training for scaling up livelihood activities into rural enterprises. It was also said that access to finance, national and international market could be availed by those having potential to excel.The Forum would provide support mechanism in the arenas of technology, production, branding, packaging and distribution through FPOs and CFCs. These workshops organized in both the capitals of J&K would assist in identifying, evaluating and addressing the business opportunities besides extending network based support to these enterprises.It was given that a simple eligibility criteria has been adopted comprising of women in the age group of 18-50 years involved in any self employment activity and aspires to upscale her livelihood activity into an enterprise.