New jobs for neo-literates

In this background, the Directorate of Literacy and Continuing Education not only aims at increasing the literacy rate by imparting education to the left out illiterates but also aims at making the neo-literates productive by imparting skill development trainings.

One such training was held under Directorate of Loka Shikshana State Literacy Mission Authority DK district Continual Education Association, Zilla Panchayat, Jana Shikshana Trust, Capart and gram panchayats in Dakshina Kannada benefitting 500 neo literates.

Speaking to City Herald, Adult Education Officer Kodandarama said that literacy programme will be successful only when the literates are empowered. In this background, through Directorate of Literacy and Continuing Education, it was decided to impart skill development trainings for the neoliterates in Dakshina Kannada with the help of other agencies and the Gram Panchayats. Of the 71 continual education centres, 49 centres were selected to impart the training for the neoliterates.

As many as 10 neoliterates in each gram panchayats were given one month training in the preparation of soaps, phenyl (herbal as well as chemical), soap liquid, detergent powder, bleaching powder, candle making, medicinal oil preparation, and fancy products like pearl chains, coral bangles, necklaces and ear rings, dolls, embroidery using wires, ‘muttale’ (headgear used by the villagers while working in field), paper bags along with eco-friendly products like cloth bag,  plate from areca sheaths and jasmine cultivation, cultivation of vegetables, dairy farming, apiculture, poultry (especially rearing of Giriraja), vermi compost and mushroom cultivation.

Jana Shikshana Trust’s Sheena Shetty and Krishna Moolya said 10 continual education centres have already become production centres with products required for the day-to-day activities. They are located in Meramajalu, Moodushedde, Kotekar, Kaukradi, Konaje, Madanthyar, Bannur, Kodimbadi, Ramakunja and Ujire. These centres will be called as Madari Grama Vikasa Kendra and the products are marketed under the banner of ‘Namana Shakthi.’ The 49 centres where the training was imparted are Vittal, Balthila, Meramajalu, Kolnadu, Manji, Balepuni, Ira, Golthamajalu, Naringana, Sangabettu in Bantwal taluk; Ariyadka, Alankaru, Kodimbadi, Balnadu, Kaukradi, Belandur, Aryapu, Bannur, Ramakunja, Koila in Puttur taluk; Neermarga, Keenya, Bajpe, Ganjimutt, Kotekar, Konaje, Gurpura, Munnur, Moodushedde, Kuppepadavu in Mangalore taluk; Madanthyar, Indabettu, Kaliya, Ilanthila, Kashipattana, Hosangadi, Melanthabettu, Andinje, Ujire in Belthangady taluk; Enmur, Subrahmanya, Kalmadka, Panja, Aletti, Guthigaru, Mandekolu, Amaramudnoor, Ajjavara and Balthila in Sullia taluk. Of which, 10 centres have already started the production of materials, said Sheena Shetty. “There is a great demand for herbal phenyl produced by these neoliterates. In fact, the sample of products which have been kept at Zilla Panchayat are in great demand,” he added.

He said “training included personality development courses, information on formation of Self-Help Groups, Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, Swarna Jayanthi Rozgar Yojana, facilities from women and child welfare department, Devaraj Urs Corporation, horticulture and NHM, need for grama sabhe and jamabandhi programmes.” A sum of Rs 5 lakh has been utilised for training these neoliterates. This include materials for the training. The trainers were given Rs 1,000 honorarium by the Gram Panchayats, he added. “We have printed about 60,000 labels for the products which will be distributed among the beneficiaries,” said Krishna Moolya.

Vrunda, a trainer for the neoliterates at Merajalu said “in the beginning, women were bit hesitant to join the training programme. However, once they started the training programme, they got interested in it. There are few more women who are eager to join the training. In fact, several women have come and asked me to teach them to prepare various products. Through these vocational training, several neoliterates could become economically independent by preparing products and selling them. There is a great demand for phenyl in Meramajalu. Women go to houses to sell the products and share the earnings among themselves,” she added.

Another trainer Arun said “women in Bannur have been selling the products like phenyl, soap water to the consumers. These trained women have to continue whatever they have learnt. They have sold the products in a temple fair as well.”
Shetty said all the 10 neoliterates who underwent skill development training were given sewing machines by the Aletti Gram Panchayat.

Kodandarama said “through Zilla Panchayat and district administration, we are planning to sell the products to the government run hostels and hospitals.” On a whole, through the skill development training, the neoliterates will not sit at home. Instead, they will also contribute to the GDP of the country.

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