Bhubaneswar: Making it an inclusive affair with participation of slum, non-slum youths, transgender community members and people from all age groups, the “Skill Mela’’ of Bhubaneswar Smart City Limited (BSCL) was a grand success with 170 persons participating in the day-long event at the BMC kalyan mandap in Saheed Nagar.
Thirteen institutions were there displaying their kiosks to attract the youth for skill training in different trades and the youth also interacted with the counselors as many running under Deen Dayal Upadhya Gramin Kaushal Yojana (DDU-GKY) and Prime Minister Kaushal Vikash Yojana (PMKVY) are coming with free education, boarding, study materials and even uniform besides assured jobs once the student completes the skill education successfully.
The “Skill Mela’’ is a pilot initiative under the People Centric Programme for making Bhubaneswar “Socially Smart’’. A collaborative initiative of BSCL, Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation and United Nations Population Fund, the “Socially Smart’’ project was initiated in Jan 2017 in eight slums under Bhubaneswar Town Centre District (Smart District) and currently covers 100 slums of the city. The programme is being implemented at community-level through partner NGO Humara Bachpan Trust.
Sanjana Behera, transgender from Utkal University Basti said “the skill mela will definitely help youth especially those who are dropouts and could not progress beyond Class X. With many courses and vocational skills on display the event is going to empower the youth with more ideas for better future.’’
Another transgender Jyoti Laxmi Kinnar from Sahid Nagar said “being a mechanical engineer I was here looking at the potential of starting a skilling centre as an entrepreneur as the youth could get into interesting careers in future if they would get better counseling.’’
Though the “Skill Mela’’ was primarily aimed at helping out slum youth and students, non-slum youths also came in and took part in discussion with the counselors of the institutes and agencies imparting skill education. Whie Omprakash Patra from Puri was interested to know about knowing courses in banking and office management, S. Patra from Jagatsinghpur was interested to know skilling options in data entry operators and customer care.
Among the slum youth while Pushpanjali Rana of OUAT Farm Gate Basti was interested to know about training options available at Urban Micro Business Centre (UMBC), Pokhariput, Roji Sahoo of the same basti was interested in retail and coffee and Sitara Begum was keen to have a beautician course at UMBC and to start her own fashion boutique in future.
Soni Behera from Telugu Basti Sahid Nagar was interested to know about the skilling course on “bed side assistance’’ in which the institutions are creating home nursing experts across the city as the geriatric care has got an importance and more and more sons/daughters are staying away from the elders for their career commitments. Soni was interested to take the course under Dinabndhu Foundation, a branch of city-based Trident Academy of Technology, Infocity.
Apart from the participants former councilors of Ward No. 30 Saswati Mishra and Bhanupriya Das of Ward No. 34, General Manager (Social Projects) of BSCL Diptirani Sahoo and officials from BSCL and BMC were present during the “Skill Mela.’’
Institutes like Skill Development Institute, Upasana Educational Trust, Government ITI Bhubaneswar, Urban Micro Business Centre, ICICI Academy of Skills, Central Tool-room Training Centre, CV Raman Institute of Technology, Vocational Rehabilitation Centre, Ruchika Social Service Organisation, Trident Academy of Technology, Asmacs Skill Development Ltd, Arohan Foundation and Voltas Kaushal Vikas Kendra participated in the “Skill Mela’’.
The participating institutes claimed that after the skilling courses students are getting jobs in leading e-commerce companies, banking sector, shopping malls, construction, ship maintenance, manpower placement, medical technician, pharmacy assistant, home nursing assistant, general duty assistant, office assistant and many are turning to have their own units.