BHUBANESWAR, MAY 11, 2021
Aditya Birla Group company Utkal Alumina International Limited (UAIL) is engaged in meaningful welfare initiatives in communities living in proximity of its plant. One of its initiatives “Project Saksham” is reaching out to the unemployed rural women and helping them become self-reliant through income generation.
Since its commencement in February 2015, it has trained around 87 marginalized women. These women have been given a 6-month training in tailoring catering to every need. During the training period, participants learn basic machine operations, cutting and stitching of dress materials such as tops, kurtis, chudidar, salwar kameez, skirts, shirts, trousers and many more. UAIL has provided these women with 30 state of the art sewing machines. In these six months of training, the enthusiastic women have mastered the art of stitching garments.
Their patrons include Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya -Nawarangpur, Malkangiri; EMRS, Nabarangpur; Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalaya – Koraput; Anganwadi Centres; GNFA School; Tikiri, Aditya Birla Public School and Saraswati Sishu Vidya Mandir of Rayagada which have got their uniforms stitched by these women.
They have also received orders from private vendors Hirawats – Visakhapatnam, Ram & Sons and S R Vendor, Vizag, BOYANIKA, Ludupali Khadi & Silk Weaving Samiti, Bargarh.
Alongside, they also make fancy dresses for children and shirts for companies such as Hindalco-Power, Smelter & Flat Rolled Product (FRP) at Sambalpur; Aditya Aluminium, Lapanga; UAIL; Utkal Hospital at Tikri; Hindalco at Belur, Gare Palma, and Essel Mining at Barbil etc. The Aditya Birla Group is their strongest supporter.
Besides, they have made nearly 1 lakh face masks so far.
Several women, who have reaped a rich economic reward, thank to this project and have acknowledged UAIL’s initiative. Madhusmita Benia (36) of Kampar is one among the beneficiaries who works in the manufacturing unit. She is happy that she has now a substantial income of Rs 10,000 every month. Besides running the house, she financially supports her brother who is pursuing an engineering course.
Banita Majhi (22) from Naktiguda village has played an important role in Project Saksham,. She is the spirit behind the making of masks. She feels that besides earning a livelihood, this is her way of giving back to the society, helping them stem the coronavirus attack though the use of face mask.
Interacting with the trainees, Mazhar Baig, who heads UAIL, urged them “to put in their best efforts in learning the advanced skills required to produce designer clothes.” Reposing faith in the trainees and trainers, he hoped that the products from the unit would certainly carve out a niche for themselves in the market. “This initiative will empower and transform the lives of the rural women for a better tomorrow,” he said.
“We are much encouraged by our iconic Chairperson, Rajashree Birla, Chairperson, Aditya Birla Centre for Community Initiatives and Rural Development who believes that we must Engage, Uplift and Empower our women. Our Project is in line with her vision,” said Baig. “This is a small step in our journey to help the underprivileged women stand on their own feet. It has bolstered their confidence as well as self-esteem significantly,” he added.