Walking the Path of Entrepreneurship -
Jhumpa Dutta

“I am Jhumpa. I am twenty-eight years old and from a small village in Chowhatta, Birbhum, West Bengal. Most people here are engaged in daily wage labor and most families live below the poverty line. To make ends meet, I used to do Kantha embroidery for sellers in local markets nearby.

Kantha is a skill that I learnt from my mother, and I enjoy doing it. I heard about the Chowhatta Kantha Stitch Cooperative Society from other women in the village, and I joined it so I could better support my family. Finishing household chores as quickly as I can, I work long hours and on weekends.

It was here that I learnt how to stitch clothes, and I earned enough to open a small shop from my home. I want to give my children a better life and send them to school. Thanks to AIACA and the Flipkart Foundation, I could earn enough to do that! I learnt new skills and did things I never thought I could.

I learnt about how quality matters, what design should be like and how to use social media to market my work and sell. I also learnt how to assign work to other women like me and how to take responsibility for the final product. Today, I am in charge of paying my fellow artisans, and I ensure I do this promptly!

I could pursue what I wanted to do only because my family supported me, and the Flipkart Foundation and AIACA gave me the opportunity. Thank you from me and from the rest of the women artisans in my group.”

One Step Closer:
Ritika Progresses on the Road to Achieving her Dreams

Ritika resides in Sion Koliwada, Mumbai, and has recently received her Higher Secondary Certificate. She stays with her mother, a homemaker, and her father, an electrician, while her younger brother, who is in school, lives in a hostel. After clearing her 12th board examinations, Ritika thought hard about what she saw in her future. The answer was clear. She wanted to become a police officer.

While she needs to graduate and study for the enrollment exam, for now, Ritika looked for work opportunities. However, lack of communication and IT skills became unsurmountable roadblocks in her way. Thankfully, Ritika came in contact with an instructor who told her about the free digital and soft skills training offered by Pratham InfoTech Foundation.

Convincing her family, especially her father, to allow her to enrol took some doing, but she was soon on her way to learning crucial skills that would help her land a job and get closer to achieving her dream.

From interviewing skills to using a laptop, Ritika absorbed it all until she was confident enough to attend her first job fair. Seeing the positive change in her personality, she even got the green light to go for the interviews from her father.

After seven interviews, Ritika made it! Her job as a telecaller today not only helps her earn enough to support herself during graduation, but also readies her to take on the mantle of a police officer and finally conquer her dreams.

Ritika’s Quote: “I am currently working as a telecaller, and the certified training at Pratham InfoTech not only helped me land this job but also helps me get better at it every day. Today, my parents are very happy and proud that I have a well-paying job that takes me a step closer to my dream of becoming a police officer. I want to thank PIF and the Flipkart Foundation for not only empowering me financially but also for bringing a change in my parent’s mindset.”

Beating the Odds - Irfan’s Motivational Journey

“My name is Irfan, and I have a locomotor disability. But that did not deter me from becoming an independent and employed individual. This is all because of Mitti Cafe’s experiential training program that I undertook. Today, I’m working as a cafe manager at Forum Mall, Bengaluru.

I joined the organisation with a strong passion for culinary arts, specifically in making dosas. With the cafe specialising in dosas, my skills were a valuable addition, and I found a special place. That said, it was the organisation's commitment to inclusivity and empowerment that transformed my journey from a skilled cook to a confident and successful cafe manager.

Recognising my talent and potential for growth, they decided to invest in my development. They offered me upskilling training to perform additional duties essential for managing a cafe effectively. Through specialised coaching and mentorship, I learned various aspects of cafe management, including customer service, team leadership, inventory management, and financial oversight.

As I completed my training and transitioned into the role of a cafe manager, I was able to prove myself as a natural leader. My passion for dosa-making, alongside my newly acquired managerial skills, allowed me to excel in my role. Under my guidance, the team at Forum Mall was able to thrive well, and the cafe became a model of inclusivity as it only employs people with disabilities.”