UN Women Country Representative Susan Ferguson Meets Subroto Bagchi

Bhubaneswar: Newly appointed, UN Women, India Country Representative, Susan Jane Ferguson called on Subroto Bagchi, Chairman Odisha Skill Development Authority in her first visit to Odisha. Bagchi shared the State Government’s perspectives and several initiatives for skill development from a gender perspective.

He also said that for skill development we need to break free from gender stereotypes. We need more young women to come into skills and professions which were considered to be male bastions. He presented the many examples of Odia women who are excelling in jobs like loco-pilot, automotive mechanic, welder, manufacturing plant operator and so on.

He shared his thoughts on digital skills but cautioned that it must be accompanied by high quality teacher training, content, universal access to devises and Right to Internet.

Ferguson expressed her deep appreciation of the partnership between Government of Odisha and UN Women. She lauded the vision of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik that has transformed the idea of women empowerment through Mission Shakti.

She said, UN Women would like to be a strong partner in the efforts of the State, particularly through the Second Chance Education and Vocational Learning (SCE).

OSDA has a MoU with UN Women for cooperation across number of initiatives. As a part of the MoU, Women Self Help Groups under the Department of Mission Shakti, Government of Odisha from ten aspirational districts in Odisha will be trained in digital marketing & entrepreneurship to facilitate linkage to e-commerce platforms for online selling of their products.

UN Women will support development of a girls football team in Government I.T.I Balasore, Berhampur and Rourkela, basketball, volleyball courts in Gopabandhu ITI, Ambaguda, Koraput & Government ITI, Bolangir. It will also support the World Skill Centre, Bhubaneswar for mainstreaming gender in terms of policies, courses & placement of women.

UN Women’s Second Chance Education Programme has been implemented in Govt ITIs and Polytechnics of Mayurbhanj, Rayagada and Dhenkanal districts.

The team also visited the World Skill Centre Bhubaneswar where they met with OSDA CEO-cum-DTE&T Director, Reghu G. In this meeting Country Programme Manager, SCE, UN Women, India, Kanta Singh, Technical Consultant – Gender, Smita Jagdev and Additional Secretary, Pinaki Pattnaik were also present.