NITI Aayog, through its initiative in collaboration with the United Nations, has come forward with the fourth edition of #WTIAwards2019 to recognise the efforts of women entrepreneurs who are challenging conventions and playing a pivotal role in #TransformingIndia. If you are one of those women entrepreneurs disrupting the status quo, get yourself identified by NITI Aayog by clicking here! Last day to register the names for the #WTIAwards2019 is 17th November 2019.
Nilima Chaturvedi’s story began as many do, as a girl of just 14, married off into a violent household. But for her, life took an entirely different turn when she was in her mid-20s. Nilima learnt of self-help groups (SHGs) and, given her indomitable spirit, decided to found one herself. She convinced a few other women to join her, and thus began her journey to the formation of the Korea Mahila Grih Udyog (KMGU).
The first milestone for Nilima was when her newly-formed SHG got a bank loan to buy a knitting machine. In 2001, the group sold 5,000 sweaters at a state-level exhibition, after which they started receiving orders from nearby schools and villages. Encouraged, they diversified their product range and started making decorative items and chutneys. They sold these at Chhattisgarh’s mega cultural event, Rajyotsav, held in the capital, Raipur, and got a resounding response.
Nilima leveraged this success to form 40 SHGs. Meanwhile, the district collector suggested the formation of an umbrella organisation, the KGMU. Nilima and her SHGs joined this group, and under her dynamic leadership, a separate unit was formed in Janakpur. More than 500 women from nearby villages joined Nilima as she ventured into papad production. They started making pickles, masalas, turmeric powder, coriander powder, and other home products in bulk, which they sold through their retail arm, the Korea Mahila Kiran Dukan.
Nilima’s business savvy and courage have secured employment for hundreds of women in the district, enabling them to become more self-reliant and independent. Nilima herself is the president of the KMGU and her next task, she says, is to train workers on food safety and standard operating procedures as they seek FSSAI certification for their products.
To conclude, if you are one such woman entrepreneur or you know one of such women entrepreneurs playing a significant role in #TransformingIndia through their remarkable enterprises, don’t forget to get their names identified at NITI Aayog’s #WTIAwards2019. Click here!