IKEA Foundation has announced a partnership that can provide employment and entrepreneurship opportunities to one million underprivileged women across India. The three-year Finance Ministry-approved programme will be implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Xyntéo and the India Development Foundation (IDF), it said.
A report from International Monetary Fund (IMF) estimates that if the number of female workers were the same as that of men, India’s GDP could expand by 27 per cent.
The EUR 16 million programme that will focus on Karnataka, Maharashtra, Telengana and Delhi NCR aims to create a positive impact on the lives and livelihoods of women through training, employment and entrepreneurial skills development, test and establish an innovative model of a public-private partnership that responds to the aspirations and needs of women, and identified needs of the private sector and establish a continuum that connects education, to skills, jobs and growth.
Per Heggenes, IKEA Foundation CEO, was quoted as saying, “We believe that women can be the most important catalysts for change in their children’s lives as well as in society more generally. By empowering women, we can improve children’s health, education and future—and that’s good for everyone in India.”
Ashish Bhatt, Managing Director, Xyntéo, was quoted as saying, “This programme strives to ensure that India’s women – the country’s greatest untapped resource – have the opportunity to gain genuine skills and enjoy meaningful employment. Such partnerships are at the core of Xyntéo’s mission to reinvent growth together with our partners. We are proud of the part this partnership will play in helping realise the country’s full economic potential.”