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Jagrak Krishak: Empowering Women Farmers In Rajasthan

Jagrukta’ or awareness is a vital component for the initiation of change and/or development.

Under the Jagruk Krishak (enlightened farmer) initiative started by the S.M. Sehgal Foundation in Umrain block, Alwar, Rajasthan, women are involved in training sessions, which build awareness around sustainable agricultural practices.

The sessions help build knowledge on soil quality analysis, balanced soil nutrition, drip irrigation, mulching, bedding techniques, and others, besides answering questions such as:

  • What should be added to the soil beside Urea and DAP?
  • Why are Zinc and Boron important for the quality of the soil?
  • How can drip irrigation save water and cost?
  • What are the various government schemes and subsidies available? And so on.

Suman is twenty-six years old, resides in the village of Sahori, and is a farmer by occupation for almost a decade. She excitedly talks about the changes the initiative has brought about in her life: “Post the soil-testing, we were provided with the required type and quantity of fertilizer, based on the type of soil of our field, and the crop; the subsequent increase in the yield of onion helped us reap good profits, which were used to enhance the general quality of life of my family.”

Suman hopes for the initiative to continue so that more women benefit from the same. From her side, she spreads the word where she can, so that village women are encouraged to come forward, and benefit from ‘Jagruk Krishak’.

Saroj has been practising agriculture for about eight years now. She hails from the same village as Suman. She commends the introduction to solar spray pumps for spraying medicines and fertilizers, rather than the conventional way, which was painful for the hands and shoulders.

“It all started with one meeting held by the foundation; during this session, women were encouraged to form groups, buy a solar spray pump collectively, and also use the same as a group, as per a timetable, allowing time for everyone to conveniently use the same. Now, we do not need to depend on the men of the house to help us, as the solar spray pump is easy to recharge, environment-friendly, and friendly to use too. Such initiatives also encourage ‘women farmers’ to come together, share inputs and feedbacks.”

Savitri, from Jatiyana village, could not agree more with Saroj. She says that spraying medicines prior to the introduction of the solar spray pump was a tedious process, most of the times resulting in blisters on the hands and pain in the shoulders due to which she was unable to perform household chores properly. Besides this, not worrying about the availability of electricity, as the tank is solar energy operated, is a big relief, she adds.

“Sehgal Foundation visited our village Jaityana some three years back. We were told about the use of soil-testing, the important of the use of the right type and quantity of fertilizers, as per the quality of the soil, and the correct way of applying the same to our fields. On the ‘demo’ portion of the field, I recorded a thirty per cent increase in yield, with which I was very happy. I have been farming for almost twenty years now, and this is the first time I recorded this kind of a yield. It helped boost my confidence manifold, as I realized that I was capable of generating more profits from my land,” says Bhagawati, with a sense of pride in her voice.

Missar, aged fifty-five years old, who resides in village Thekda, commends the initiative not only because it has helped reap a profit of about twenty-thousand rupees by just the application of the right kind of fertilizer and seeds, but also because it has helped her prove her mettle as a farmer. This has placed her in a position where she can advise other women, and enjoy the goodwill generated from the benefits reaped by her ‘peers’.

“The foundation encouraged us to experiment on 0.5 bighas of land with fertilizers suggested post a soil-testing; this section served as a demo plot in comparison to the 0.5 bighas of our land, where we continued to farm as per our traditional methods. The ‘demo’ plot gave us a profit of approximately eighteen thousand rupees,” says twenty-eight-year-old Lalita from the village of Ulheri, who eagerly propagates the word about the initiative.

Rakhi, who hails from the same village as Lalita, is happy with ‘Jagruk Krishak’ too as it has helped her provide a better education for her kids; she adds that the since the benefit is there for all to see and gauge, other women should avail of this too, in order to enhance their lives, and the lives of their families.

Sanjay Kumar, project coordinator, Sehgal Foundation, agrees as he can easily compare the before and after scenario. He highlights two major changes: the self-confidence that women have gained through the initiative, and their role in decision-making processes, which has seen a paradigm shift.

“Before women hardly spoke with us, also because there was not much to share; now, it is very different, as most women have become aware and confident about what they know, and how to apply it,” adds Kumar.

Savita Gupta, Field Assistant Sehgal Foundation, talks of the times when the women of the village would not be willing to try something new, and every decision would be the decision of the head of the family, usually the father-in-law or husband.

Now, with the knowledge which these ladies have, decisions are informed, and hence, more productive, which is how their self-esteem is enhanced, she adds.

According to a United Nations Human Development Report, only 32.8% of Indian women formally participate in the labour force required in agriculture, a rate that has remained steady since the 2009 statistics.

By comparison, men constitute 81.1% (UNHDR-2011). An estimated 52-75% of Indian women engaged in agriculture are illiterate, an education barrier that prevents women from participating in more skilled labour sectors and decision making processes.

It is vital to bring about a much overdue change to these numbers, for which awareness is an important requirement. Hence, it is not only important to encourage women in rural areas to change mind-sets, but also empower them with the ‘tools’ to facilitate and lead change.

5 Awesome Methods For Young Entrepreneurs To Finance Business Ideas

As a young entrepreneur, you probably have some great business ideas that you want to see come to life. However, the problem with business ideas is that they aren’t necessarily always understood, so many of them never see the light of day.

A random stranger not understanding your idea is hardly something that matters to you, but if the person you are talking to is the one that you are hoping is going to help you finance your project, then it is everything in the world.

It’s normal for someone who is new to the world of entrepreneurship to come across issues with funding their ideas, because they’ve probably started without a solid background, and it might even be their first attempt at running a business ever.

It may seem quite hard to get everything running at that point, but there are solutions that can get you on the right track. It’s important that you’re smart and careful with loans, and know where to find the right investors.

Search the Web

First of all, you need to have in mind that we are living in a digital age, and you can find almost anything by browsing the web. This, of course, includes investments. What’s great about the investment world online is that it’s similarly simple to shopping from your own chair.

As opposed to traditional lenders, you will find that the criteria are much less restrictive for you to be eligible. Basically, online funding comes with a lot of benefits, and you need to wait much less.

Still, don’t forget about checking all the costs that come along with the long, as well as interest rates, because you don’t want to make a mistake and end up being unable to repay.

Consider Crowdfunding

Speaking of online funding, crowdfunding is very popular nowadays. Just look at how successful this 22-year-old businessman is when it comes to it. It basically consists of an entrepreneur drawing together a community that is going to fund their project or idea.

The idea at the core of this method is called crowdsourcing, and it is basically outsourcing duties which would usually a contractor or an employee do, to the aforementioned community, by openly calling them out for help.

Every crowdfunding site has its own rules, but the way it generally goes is that you pitch your idea, determine the fundraising goal, and then set up a deadline for all of it to happen.

Once you have done this, your potential patrons will look at your pitch and see if they would like to support it. If they do, they are rewarded for their help. Kickstarter is one of the best-known crowdfunding websites.

Go The Traditional Way

If you don’t feel like taking the online route, you can always decide and go the traditional way. This road is full of taking the already-proven steps and doing everything according to the rules.

When you look at businesses today, a great number still does things “the old way” and finances via a bank or a traditional lender. This doesn’t make it either a better or a worse option – it is you who determines what works best for you in the end.

What is essential though is that you be aware that if you are going to get funding from business loans and credit cards, you need a first-rate business plan.

While it may sound obvious that an amazing business plan is necessary for it to be funded, another reason why this is important is because when you fill out a loan application, you need to input every little detail of the business that you have in plan, and especially how it’s going to grow in the days that are to come.

Therefore, if you want to go the “proven way”, you must do a proper examination of marketing strategies that you are going to use when the time comes.

Engage With People

It’s logical that every entrepreneur’s goal is going to be to sell as much as they can. But it’s essential for every business, especially a new one, to gain relevance, and take part in a great number of discussions, which quite often don’t have to necessarily be about your business.

Social media is there for you to engage with the people that fit the demographic that you are targeting, without you being there just like someone who is there to make a sale. You should repost articles, leave comments, and generally show your support for the community.

This way you’ll get the word out about your business, and be able to find better opportunities to finance your ideas. Remember – when you share someone else’s content, it doesn’t have to mean that you are drawing attention away from yourself, but quite the opposite.

Making sure that your branding is always around, people will remember that it was you who shared the valuable content that they’ve been looking for.

Take A Loan

Taking a loan is the last on this list because it is often seen as the last resort. This is something you certainly don’t want to do this without proper research beforehand.

However, according to a home loan specialist, it can provide you with the proper funding and get you right on track if you do it right. Of course, hiring a professional adviser is highly recommended in this case. Free advice on the internet might end up leaving you bankrupt.

This is a serious step to take, and you should know that investor loan policies are tightening. You want to be aware of all the options that you have, in terms of services, loan rates, and other things, so that you end up with the best loan rate which fits your current situation.

You should also be aware that applying for a PAN card will make it much easier for you to get a loan. Furthermore, you should learn about loan schemes such as Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana.

So, as you can now see, there is a wide variety of solutions when it comes to finding finances for your business ideas. It is generally up to you as an entrepreneur to determine which solution is the best for your kind of business.

Consider what kind of products or services you are attempting to sell, and which the best approach to present them to your audience is.

Also read:

How Community Homestays Are Empowering Women In Nepal

The mist rolled over the hills around Panauti village as we sat in the first-floor balcony of our hostess, Sabita’s home. We watched it cover the terraced fields around the house and felt the chill of the wind on our bare arms.

My fellow-traveller Katrin, a travel agent from Germany, our tour guide, Sushila, and I were enjoying a cup of tea with Sabita, chatting with her about her life and her family. Her 18-year old daughter, Monika, joined us, speaking with us in fluent English.

We were staying with Sabita for the night, courtesy of CommunityHomestay.com, a community-based Homestay network that “connects global-travellers with the real people of Nepal for a genuine local travel experience.”

I was in Nepal as a hosted delegate attending the Himalayan Travel Mart 2018. Before the conference, we were taken on a trip to Panauti village, about 1.5 hours from Kathmandu, for the Homestay experience.

An initiative from Royal Mountain Travel, Community Homestay allows tourists to get an authentic feel of village life in Nepal. Here, the host family welcomes you as a guest and a friend, sharing their home and way of life with you.

My interest in Community Homestay’s initiatives in Nepal stemmed from their efforts to encourage women’s empowerment and help preserve and value their traditional skills.

Most of the owners of the Homestays are women and housewives, so this platform helps the women and local communities of Nepal generate sustainable economic opportunities as part of a responsible tourism initiative.

As a guest in a Homestay in Panauti, you can learn to cook like a local from the host family, explore the community life with them, learn native skills, such as rice planting, and see their perspective on life. You can also volunteer to teach in one of the schools or assist with the rebuilding of classrooms damaged in the devastating earthquake of 2015.

When my fellow-travellers and I first arrived in Panauti by mini-bus, we were welcomed by a group of women in bright red saris who garlanded us and applied the traditional tikka to greet us.

One of the young girls gave a speech in perfect English, introducing us to the community Homestay initiative and explained how it helps village women create financial independence for themselves and their families. She told us there were currently 17 families in Panauti involved in the Homestays, with more joining soon.

20 percent of the earnings from the Homestays in Panauti village is channelled back into the community, for instance, by supporting a child’s education. So the Homestays not only uplift the women but the community as a whole, too.

The women are taught English through classes in the village, hold cooking classes for their guests and get to earn money doing exactly what they have been doing all their lives – taking care of others. Most of them are uneducated and many were married off at an early age, so they have few skills to support themselves.

Sabita’s Story

Our hostess, Sabita, is a 37-year old mother of two. She was married off at the age of 14 years and had her first child at 16. She has not studied beyond the 3rd standard.

Her husband is a retired army officer who works as a security guard in Saudi Arabia, sends money home, and comes home a few times a year. Their elder daughter has migrated to Australia and the younger daughter, Monika, with whom she lives, is learning English in the hope of moving there, too.

With almost no education and no marketable skills, Sabita would be hard-pressed to find a job. However, for the last 5 years, she has been hosting guests in her beautiful Homestay at the top of a small hill.

In the last year, she has earned an income of 1.5 lakh rupees from Homestays alone. She also has a regular renter, a tourist who has been staying with her for a year.

A stay at her house usually costs $25 a night, including all meals. Sabita is an exceptional cook. We enjoyed our meals with her and chipped in to help her make aloo parathas for dinner.

One of my favourite dishes was a sort of chutney she made out of dried vegetables and spices. It was so delicious, I told her she should bottle it and sell it. She replied that Nepalis don’t like to eat processed or bottled foods, preferring to make them fresh for every meal.

All Homestays are expected to maintain certain standards as far as hygiene and comfort are concerned. Sabita’s house was very comfortable indeed. We had piping hot water for bathing from a solar water heater, cosy quilts to tuck ourselves in during the night and a beautiful view of the fields and hills.

For Indian tourists who want to experience authentic Nepali village life, living in a Homestay in Nepal would be just like coming home. The food is very much like Indian food (almost the same, actually), the language is not difficult to understand, and the hosts are warm, friendly and hospitable.

For a responsible and authentic travel experience in Nepal, you can’t beat a Community Homestay. You will learn how people in Nepal actually live and help them generate economic opportunities from their very own houses and their unique culture.

You will also get to give back to people still rebuilding their nation from the devastation of the 2015 earthquake. You can choose from Homestays all over Nepal by browsing the website here.

© Priya Florence Shah is Publisher and Editor of Naaree.com. She also publishes a travel blog.

For a responsible and authentic travel experience in Nepal, you can’t beat a Community Homestay. You will learn how people in Nepal actually live and help them generate economic opportunities from their very own houses and their unique culture. #Nepal #homestay #responsibletravel

How To Start a Photography Business Based on Your Passion For Travel

Do you love to travel and take photographs? In this article, we show you how to start a photography business based on your passion for travel.

What is beauty? What makes the world beautiful? The more that we go places, travel around the world and see cultures, buildings, food, amusement avenues, diverse geographical features and wildlife, the further our definition of beauty assumes meaning.

It makes good sense to suggest that beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder, especially so, when the beholders are women. Women make great travel photographers because we live, think and breathe beauty.

Since women like to explore and learn without worrying about the purpose, they derive value from what they learn as they go places and visualize ways to derive messages from visual experiences.

Travel photography is a great business for women to start and if they can harbour entrepreneurial ambitions, there’s no stopping them. Here are some tips for women to get started in the business of travel photography.

Learn About Photography

The first step is to seek the right education on photography. To start with, photographers deal with technology and the world of photography is evolving every day. One has to learn the skills of identifying, operating and maintaining photography equipment.

Knowing the basics of aperture, shutter, lens, flash, picture clarity, light customization and different modes, battery life and photo editing are necessary. There are various universities and mass media institutes that offer professional photography courses, vocational training courses and extra credit programs for ambitious professionals.

Further interning under a veteran professional travel photographer always helps. Networking with people, interacting with them and sharing their experience is important.

Purchase the Right Set of Equipment

For travel photographers, a lightweight and compact camera for travel photography that is easy to disintegrate, pack and assemble should be preferred. Not that the performance, features and functionality are to be overlooked but it has to be easy on the person carrying it while travelling.

It is a good idea to start with rented photography equipment instead of investing money into high-end cameras. Remember, that we are talking business here. Always keep your risk profile on the lower side, to begin with.

Create Your Portfolio And Website

For women to build a business out of travel photography it is important that they switch on their marketing and public relations machinery at an early stage. A very fundamental step in this direction is to create one’s own website with good photography content.

Remember that it may not be possible to rely on face to face marketing when women are busy travelling to different places owing to constraints of time, distance, costs and lack of verified information about the credentials of prospects.

As such investing in building a travel photography website and digital marketing services can prove to be a very cost-effective means to enhance customer outreach, showcase your offerings, and brand yourself.

Define Your Service and Expectations

The next logical step in creating a business out of a passion for travel photography is to define your service offerings and specialize in a specific genre of travel photography.

Why is this required? To succeed at doing business you need to understand that strategy is specialization. As you gain experience and exposure to different genres of photography while travelling across the world, sharp patterns of excellence and strengths will emerge, paving the path for you to understand yourself and your work better and repeat the practices that deliver the best results.

There are various genres of nature photography, wildlife photography, landscape photography, fashion photography and more. Once travel photographers have spent a year or two interning, freelancing and travelling, a picture on the road ahead begins to emerge.

Build Your Business and Create a Presence On Social Media

Once you have a feel for the market, the tastes, and preferences of clients and information on the pricing for different services offered, it is time to go a bit further and invest more capital into social media marketing to brand yourself, create a niche segment based on specialization and communities of followers on social media for branded photography content to go viral.

Remember that travel photography deals with intangibles, and there are no inventories unless one is planning to sell branded merchandise. Leveraging social media augments the tangible component of business development, brand building, and brand recall generation.

Moreover, it gives local access to resources and prospects. Local contacts, local acclimatization, and local communities enable space specific learning and can be sources of strategic advantages.

Find Your Niche and Ways to Make Money

Once your website has been up and operating for long enough (two to three years) and your social media marketing is on in full swing, projects should start dropping in. At this juncture, travel photographers should look back on the journey thus far and reflect on the key learning outcomes.

The point is to look for patterns, trends, and insights emerging from the experience and identify a niche segment that can be a source of advantage in business going forward.

You should from here on, spend time and effort looking for non-imitable and rare aspects within one’s body of work and seek to build on that to create brand equity and differentiate one’s travel photography services.

Keep Learning and Be Confident

The path to travel photography is full of twists and turns at every stage. Like the road of the journey in other walks of life, travel photography also presents uphill challenges like criticisms from art cynics, higher demands for creative inputs and aesthetics and bargains on the pricing from clients.

The final and never-ending lesson that travel photographers must learn from the experience and keep learning is the skill to deal with not just new geographies, cultures and photography equipment but handling people.

As you get better at dealing with people, your confidence in themselves and in your travel photography as a sustainable business will only grow.

Last but not the least; it is not the camera lens that makes the world a beautiful place. It is the photographer’s imagination that makes the difference.

Women should always be proud of their vulnerability to emotions while working behind the lens. These emotions only add strength to their travel photography.

Author’s Bio:

A wanderer by choice, Michelle Breitstein has an unending love for the mountains. She craves for experiences of all kinds and goes wherever her wanderlust takes her. She has explored Switzerland, India, France, Austria, Nepal, Tibet and several places in her own country, United States. Her great achievements include trekking to Everest Base Camp, Chadar Trek and Bernese Oberland Glacier Trek. She also has interest in mountain biking, kayaking and leading a nomadic life where she can spare time for travel writing, adventure sports, photography, volunteer travel, and staying cooped in a caravan and guiding a tour. You can connect with her at  @iammichelle_05

Do you love to travel and take photographs? In this article, we show you how to start a photography business based on your passion for travel. Travel photography is a great business for women to start and if you can harbour entrepreneurial ambitions, there's no stopping you. Here are some tips to get started in the business of travel photography. #travel #photography #business

Domestic Abuse And Tough Love: Taking Care Of Your Inner Child

If you had a child that was being bullied or abused in school, what would you do?

Would you merely listen, albeit empathetically, fob it off with, “Don’t worry, I’m here for you whatever you choose to do,” and then walk away to get on with ‘more important’ things?

No, you would not. As a parent, you would, with every breath in your body, fight for your child’s well-being and their right to be safe.

So why don’t we do that for our inner child? That child inside of all of us that yearns to be safe and cared for. That vulnerable part of us that wants to know we will take action on its behalf should someone abuse or bully us.

Yet, many, many women and men ignore their inner child day after day, year after year, with devastating consequences.

And every time we do that – every time we allow someone to abuse us, put us down or traumatize us without standing up for ourselves – our inner child crawls ever further into its shell, hurt by the betrayal of being let down by the only adult it has to care for it – our self.

This betrayal of one’s inner child leads to feelings of low self-worth and low self-esteem – which only promotes further abuse – a cycle that’s increasingly hard to escape from.

Being there for your inner child, protecting that vulnerable part of oneself, means refusing to tolerate abuse in any form. It means understanding that your feelings of hurt, of sadness, of betrayal, need to be dealt with, not pushed away.

Whether you choose to do that in sessions with a therapist or go it alone is up to you. But if you’re not willing to do it, nobody can do it for you – not the police, nor a lawyer, nor the courts.

None of them is here to take care of your inner child. You are.

Also, read: 

If you know a friend suffering domestic abuse…

For friends who listen to the stories of those suffering from domestic violence and abuse, you should know that there’s only so much one can do as the sympathetic shoulder to cry on. Playing the part of a passive sounding-board only provides temporary relief and attention.

Once the person has unloaded their grief on you, they will go back to living their dismal lives and continue to tolerate the abuse they just complained to you about, without doing anything to change it.

Ultimately every person in an abusive or self-destructive situation has to hit rock-bottom – a place where they finally say, NO MORE! At this point, they can either choose to hit back at their abuser, leave the abusive situation or start to listen to their inner child and take better care of themselves.

No one can help us reach that place. No matter how you want them to change, remember that’s what YOU want. But do THEY want it too? You must let them reach the place of personal choice themselves, or with the help of a professional.

Once they decide that enough is enough, this is the point at which you can step in. Whether it is for a safe place to spend the night or assistance with finances or help with getting a job – it is at this point you can be the best friend you always wanted to be for them.

Until people decide that they want to change, there is nothing you can do to change them. Not convincing, cajoling, logic or reason. Until the heart decides it, the mind will not follow.

Yes, it is painful to stand by and watch someone go through the pain and anguish of hitting rock-bottom. But it’s often the only thing we can do without getting sucked into a vortex of negativity ourselves.

The best thing you can do if you have someone in your life who’s suffering from domestic abuse is to practice good self-care and take care of your own inner child, so you can be there for them when they finally decide to take action.

If you have to distance yourself for a while to do that, so be it. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by their complaints and know they don’t plan on taking action, offer to take them to a therapist to deal with their feelings.

Let your friend or family member know that, should they wish to change their life, you will be there for them. Don’t let yourself be emotionally wrecked by their toxicity and self-destructive behaviour and don’t feel guilty for choosing yourself over them.

Focus on your own feelings and deal with your own anger and sadness, so that you can be objective for your friend when they need it. You cannot help them from a damaged place, only from a place of healing.

Author bio:

Priya Florence Shah is editor of Naaree.com and the author of From Doormat to Devi: 10 Steps to Stop Overfunctioning in Relationships and Take Your Life Back, which shows you a step-by-step way to get back control of your life starting today. You can connect with her @PriyaFlorence

Being there for your inner child, protecting that vulnerable part of oneself, means refusing to tolerate abuse in any form.

Loving Yourself, Celebrating Your Successes

Success comes in many shapes and sizes. A success can be as small as getting out of bed when you feel totally unmotivated, or as large as landing the job of your dreams.

For some people, getting over a broken relationship is success. For others, it’s giving up smoking or earning enough to buy that shiny new BMW. Anything you managed to do that wasn’t particularly easy can be classed as a success.

The way we view success in society is interesting. We are conditioned to be competitive, to always aim higher. There is nothing wrong with aiming high, per se, but because we are always fixated on the next big thing, we often forget to spend much time reflecting on our previous achievements.

What’s more, we have been taught not to be too self-congratulatory, in order that we don’t come off as smug, or a show-off.

Why are we prone to focusing on what went wrong?

In a bid to polish ourselves up and make fewer mistakes in life, we tend to focus more on our errors. We can spend far too much time looking at what we did wrong so that we can ensure we don’t make the same mistakes again.

Although some level of reflection on mistakes is healthy, we should forgive ourselves for them. Mistakes are often an integral aspect of the route to success.

Most achievements don’t happen overnight. Achievements wouldn’t even feel like achievements if they were effortless. The point is that we don’t always instantly know the best course of action to take.

There is some level of challenge or obstacles to overcome. So it stands to reason that we will make a few mistakes on our way to success. How we view those mistakes is everything.

Celebrating success is healthy

The truth is that celebrating our successes is completely healthy. It changes the mindset to a more positive one. When we are always focused on the next big thing, we are not present – we are firmly stuck in the future.

That doesn’t leave a lot of room for appreciating the now. It’s not a great idea to have your mind immersed in the past or the future for too long… long enough to reflect a little or formulate a rough course of action is fine.

When we appreciate the present moment, it’s much easier to notice how we came to be there. For example, when you’re feeling gratitude for the job you have right now, it’s less likely that you’ll be obsessing about the next rung on the ladder. In gratitude, your mindset is geared toward what’s already good about your situation.

So what is good about it? There was a time when you were praying that you’d land this role. You put everything you had into preparing for it. When you finally got that call, you were over the moon.

Success! You did it. But how long did you celebrate for? If your success was forgotten overnight, the chances are your next one will be too.

Celebrating achievements leads to more achievements

When you celebrate your achievements in a real way, you reinforce the idea that you are someone who achieves. You are acknowledging your capabilities, your drive, and your lust for life.

This can only be positive! If you spend a little more time and effort on acknowledging those achievements, you will start to genuinely feel like a winner.

This means that there is no need to fixate endlessly on the next big thing. There are no gaps to fill for the sake of it. With this attitude, your confidence can’t help but grow.

Your next successes will start to take shape when the time is right, and you’ll already be in the perfect headspace to achieve them. You will know that whatever it is you put your mind to, you will achieve.

Here are a few ways to celebrate your successes:

  • Start a gratitude/achievement diary

There are actually some great tools on the market for this. The Daily Greatness Journal is one. This helps you to list all of your past achievements, plot your daily, weekly, monthly and yearly goals… and track them all as you go along.

It not only keeps you focused, but it reminds you to appreciate what is great about you and your life on a daily basis.

You can just use a simple notebook if you prefer. As long as you spend some time at the end of each day listing all of your achievements – however small – you’ll achieve something big… a healthy mindset! It will be hard not to love and appreciate yourself when you constantly reflect on your own power.

Choose whichever feels like your biggest achievement that day and spend some time reflecting on it. What benefit did that bring to your life?

Thank yourself for making it happen. Over time, you’ll start to join the dots and see just how much effort and capability went into creating your wonderful life.

  • Thank yourself with a gift

When you want to thank (or celebrate) another person, it’s normal to give them a gift of some kind. Why not do the same for yourself? You work hard to achieve the things you do, so the next time you have a noteworthy success, you should be sure to treat yourself.

If you busted a gut all month to get that awesome bonus, spend some of it on a spa day – or even a holiday. Take yourself out to dinner with a favourite friend at a particularly nice restaurant. It doesn’t even need to involve money – you might just invite some friends over for a drink, or spend a relaxed day in the park with a good book.

The point is that you’re doing something you love, and you’re doing it because you deserve it. Just don’t forget to tell any guests what the point of the occasion is!

  • Celebrate with other people

If you’ve achieved something particularly good, make a bigger deal out of it by throwing a celebration. Let’s imagine you have successfully signed a huge deal at work – a big win for your company.

Bring your colleagues and business partners into your success story by celebrating with them. This not only encourages others to appreciate your successes but their own too. It also has the added bonus of developing relationships and business networks.

You’re encouraging a culture of patting each other on the back and aiming high in life. This can only be a positive thing! It paves the way for fresh ideas and inspiration, and what a fun way to do it. When celebrating success is the norm, the people around you will be a lot happier.

  • Speak up, loud and clear

Don’t be afraid to congratulate yourself on all that you’ve overcome, and all that you’ve created in your life. You will find that by being open about your successes, you will inspire other people to go after their own. It is a great thing to help others see that they are just as powerful and capable as you are.

People with a healthy attitude will always love to see you succeed in life. Surround yourself with those kinds of people, and don’t be shy about celebrating yourself. It’s OK to be proud of what you’ve done in life.

Another way to go about this is to post about your successes publicly, in blogs and on social media. It’s hard to say whom you will inspire, but you will undoubtedly inspire some. Those who care about you will be very happy to hear about your successes in life, and the more support you get, the more likely you are to keep on giving life your all.

When you make a practice out of celebrating all your successes in life, you will feel like a strong and powerful person. The more you reinforce this idea, the fewer limitations and boundaries you’ll see. Growing as a person becomes easy, and before you know it, you’ll be looking back on your own life in awe of your own strengths.

Author Bio: Daniel Ross is part of the marketing team at Roubler — a scheduling and payroll software platform founded in Australia. Their mission is to change the way the world manages its workforces.

Image source: Pinterest 

Celebrating our successes is completely healthy. It changes the mindset to a more positive one. When we appreciate the present moment, it’s much easier to notice how we came to be there. When you celebrate your achievements in a real way, you reinforce the idea that you are someone who achieves and you'll feel strong and powerful. #success #selflove

Naaree Interviews Entrepreneur Sumati Parmar of Bharatsthali

Sumati Parmar is a young co-founder on the cusp of a sustainable fashion breakthrough. Her startup, Bharatsthali, is a conscious and contemporary approach to get handloom sarees to your doorstep.

A saree is often seen as a byword for cumbersome affair in the times of slide in and get moving clothing. At Bharatsthali, she is trying to make sarees a part of day-to-day life for those for it isn’t. She aims to make sarees fashionable and feasible by bringing utility and aesthetics together for the quintessential women of today.

Naaree caught up with her to find out about her motivations, vision and learnings from her startup experience.

Please describe the vision for your startup, Bharatsthali.

I think about the saree in a contemporary way. Before Bharatsthali, I would ask myself if I was buying an original handloom saree or was paying the right price?

In fact, there were times, I would like to buy a handloom saree but there were no means to buy it. Unless of course, you travel to the place and get it personally. Not exactly a pocket-friendly and sensible idea.

We have collaborated and partnered with artists and weavers directly to bring the best in natural fabric. We are transforming a saree, maintaining its traditional connotations while asking women to adopt it as a fashion trend– just like any other outfit.

That’s the only way forward to strike a balance between traditional and modern sensibility. It is 2018 already. Don’t you think it is high time to bring forth a change?

We are asking women to think of a saree as an outfit that embraces them as they are and is perfect for Indian weather. While we are proud of its being a cultural icon, there is much more to a saree than just representing India on a global stage.

As far as offering sarees are concerned, we ask for a price that the work and art deserves. No middle channels between us and the artists mean that we have a robust framework in place that governs the quality and financial well-being of the artists. This fair trade is what makes us unique.

We believe if our work model is harming anybody’s interest along the value chain, our purpose is defeated. Therefore, our customer pays the reasonable price and the artists/weavers get the best value for their work as well.

What does Bharatsthali offer and why is it unique?

We want people to understand the value of a handloom sarees – especially the kind of efforts and perseverance that goes into it.

We want the buyers to know how a weaver sits and manually weaves for 8 hours a day for a month or two, to bring you a saree that is forever and for generations to come.

Our exclusivity lies in the fact that we have partnered with weavers and artists directly to promote a fair and ethical marketplace. We have the direct control of the quality whereas the weavers get what their art deserves.

We see sarees from a woman’s point of view. The sarees at Bharatsthali are handpicked by women. Issues like a fabric being too sheer and not apt for a workplace or an event are eliminated.

This is an important process because we are introducing the saree in their lifestyle. If they are facing a problem as small as stitching a fall to the saree and getting a tailor-fit blouse, we can’t do that. Therefore, we have everything for them as a one-stop destination for saree shopping.

The landscape of a saree is beyond the 9-yards and GI tags. It is extensive and volatile. A lane beyond the said address and you can’t have the GI tag to ensure the purity and originality of the yarn.

This makes it very tricky because if you don’t know the processes, understand the technicalities and have a thorough knowledge of what you are bringing to the fore, you lose your exclusivity and originality.

Bharatsthali silk sarees have recognized by Silk Mark India for their purity and authenticity. The sarees on the portal are the result of our extensive travels through the handloom villages and communities all over the country. So, we know what we are talking about.

What inspired your achievements?

The risk and potential of calling something of my own! My husband made sure that I do because I think more than me, he believed in what I can be. I am glad that I mustered the courage and tried it out! I guess, it has turned out really well!

What are some challenges that you faced initially when you started out? Please share specific examples with advice to other women on overcoming their challenges?

Don’t try to have it all! There will be some testing times when you would need to set your priorities all over again. So be it.

Women tend to feel guilty when they can’t strike a balance between their family and professional life and my advice to them is – don’t. You can’t have it all, so there is no point to bother about it. If there is a PTA you can’t make it to, owing to your pressing schedule, ask your spouse to fill in for you.

There might be several people trying to explain things that you know about and work with. How crazy it might seem, but you need to maintain your calm. This calmness is going to take you a long way.

What are all the things that an entrepreneur/achiever in your industry needs to keep in mind? Apart from your great idea, what do you need to be armed
with?

Perseverance and common sense! You need to think contemporary that has a reflection of times ahead. You can’t be working on an idea that might be dead within five years. That is a sheer waste of time and resources.

There is no substitute for knowledge. A great idea, when combined with knowledge becomes unstoppable and invincible.

Did you have a mentor to guide you through your journey? 

Throughout this, my mentor has been my husband. He encouraged me to explore my entrepreneurial side and it is still unravelling!

While the decision-making and core management is my KRA, I seek out his advice when I am stuck and need a fresh pair of eyes to look into something that is troubling me or I can’t find a solution of.

How did you recruit your first team? What advice do you have for building and nurturing teams in your startup?

A team that is as passionate about sarees as I am and is bursting with energy.

We are a bootstrapped startup and we need to understand that no matter how hard we try we have certain limitations and our energy, zeal and desire to create something awesome can’t replace the money.

We needed a team that looks up at the stars and keeps feet on the ground. I got lucky, I would say.

Please describe some successes and failures you have experienced as an
entrepreneur.

I still have trouble putting forth the idea that handloom sarees are supposed to be worth a fortune – literally and figuratively. They are going to be a treasure trove for you, as well as cost you extra. You are paying for a human connection and efforts here and that can’t be bargained with.

My success is the reason I am here. We have put together sarees from every state of India at one place. Our extensive travel and research has brought artists and weavers and drove such an unorganized industry to a digital stability.

What are 3 key lessons that you have learned as an entrepreneur? 

  • Your mind matters and so does your point of view to see things. Never underestimate your perspective to look and understand things.
  • Learn to take everything in your stride, be it bouquets or brickbats, success or failure. You don’t have the time or energy to stop midway and take everything to the heart. If feedback is constructive, take it and implement it but don’t overthink anything.
  • Start seeing your business and time in terms of money. I know this is something that you have been advised against all your life and that, money can’t buy you everything, but if you value your time and others’, this advice is going to have your back in long run.

Third Eye: Feminism Through The Lens Of Fashion

Style is about a woman, who is 5’1 and wears flats to a party. ~ Sabyasachi Mukherjee

Feminism is a school of thought that focuses on gender equality and liberation, with the aim of establishing equal opportunities for woman.

When observing the feminist movement through the eye of fashion, the sentence might sound like a paradox to some. The fashion industry has been considered an industry which showcases women as objects and props.

In fact, many critics believe advocates of the feminist movement should have zero fashion sense. Elaine Showalter, the prominent American critic, and feminist, once said her love for fashion is considered a shameful secret by many people.

People have a notion that feminism is all about serious issues and objectives for women, rather than trivial matter like beauty and fashion. A feminist cannot look beautiful, because she has more important matters to deal with.

But, who decides what a feminist wants? Isn’t it the primary objective of the whole movement to give the women the right to do the things they want to do?   Isn’t judging women on their look and appearance just the opposite of what feminism holds dear?

People tend to overlook the fact that the perspective of society decides the movement of the culture. If people cannot change their attitudes, their judgment is going to affect the way women dress and look.

However, if feminists ignore the fashion and beauty industry, it is going to continue showcasing the very stereotypes feminists detest so much.

The Feminist Movement And The Influence Of Fashion

If one looks back into history, while women were fighting for suffrage in the early twentieth century, they used style as their tool of protest. The suffragists wore jewellery in green, white and violet to make a statement.

The first letter of colour G, W, V became an acronym for giving women votes. Another example of women using fashion to make a statement in a patriarchal society was seen in the 1980s. This time the women started wearing men’s clothing to get better opportunities in the socio-political sector.

These women wore tailored suits just like men, to prove their point. Their style was the replica of the male fashion. However, these clothes too had a definite feminine touch to it.

The addition of pearls and lace were incorporated into the dresses to show that women could be powerful without losing their feminine touch.

The Stereotyping Of Women

According to Dr Newman, a prominent psychoanalyst, women wearing pantsuits in the 80s were considered strong, opinionated, and hot-headed. They were viewed as feminist, and back then, it was not a compliment.

The situation has changed a bit, but women are still stereotyped. In many parts of the world, they have the freedom to wear what they want, but the judgment they endure as a result can be daunting.

For example, Hilary Clinton has received the most negative media attention for her attire. The media has continuously been obsessed with what she wears, rather than what she says.

In Asian cultures, the same judgmental attitudes exist. The stereotyping of women continues to prevail in modern times.

Fashion And Women’s Expression

Fashion, as a medium, helps women express their thoughts, ideas and identity, while the fashion industry helps women to decide what to wear.

Earlier the industry was dominated by the men who were unaware of the needs, choices, and requirements of women. However, this changed around the 1960s and 70s.

During this time, women finally started taking charge of their attire and were now buying merchandise and mixing them to create a new look. Fashion houses like Calvin Klein and Ralston took notice and started bringing out clothing lines that matched women’s needs.

A prominent fashion designer once said that the way a woman dresses up shows her thought processes and ideologies. Women with confidence and élan can carry off a bright hair colour in vibrant shades. She can dictate fashion and beauty according to her sensibilities.

In the mid 70’s when the women were slowly becoming conscious about equality and better opportunity in the professional life, they started choosing men’s wear as preferred clothing.

Calvin Klein understood this shift in preference and 1977 launched their clothing line. The clothes were based on the style of men’s clothing and used elements of menswear.

They launched jackets, shirts, and skirts in softer fabrics like cashmere, Carmeuse or thin velvets. These clothes reflected the dominant side of the women who wore them and wanted to be seen as equal to male co-workers.

Fashion With Practical Sense

In the late 70’s, Diane von Fürstenberg started her clothing line with practical and comfortable clothes. These dresses helped working women get the job done quickly.

These outfits are still fashionable among women. The suit was the combination of practicality and conservative in nature. Women looked powerful in these clothes, but never too intimidating.

Women’s clothes have always been designed to showcase the body of the wearer. Women themselves have consciously or unconsciously promoted this idea.

For example, the corset dresses worn by women in the Victorian Era. These dresses had a firm orthopaedic support, over which layers and layers of fabric were laid.

In these dresses, women could not run, had breathing difficulties and could not eat freely. These dresses were the true representative of the ideas and notions of the society in which they lived.

However, with increasing awareness of women rights and the women’s movement, these tight dresses were eliminated from a women’s closet, and in their place, more comfortable and practical clothing was restored.

Here are some of the qualities of practical clothes that attracted the attention of women:

  1. Non-interfering

The dresses were comfortable to wear and did not need any assistance in wearing them. They required a minimum amount of accessories. While wearing them, women were not expected to sport a high heels sandal or a clutch.

Such practical dresses gave women the independence to move freely. Also, these dresses were lightweight and made of natural fabric. They ensured comfort as well as style. It was for this reason that many working women took to wearing these dresses at work.

  1. Can be worn for any occasion

Modern fashions have an easy day to night transaction. Women can wear them comfortably at formal or casual events without feeling out of place.

These outfits gave women the confidence to carry out tasks they needed to. They could wear them while attending their daily chores or could team it with minimal accessories for special occasions.

  1. Suitable for the weather

Dresses such as Kurtis were ideal for the climate of the location they were work in. Women felt more comfortable in them during hot summer days or cold winter nights.

In the old days, fashion did not incorporate these ideals. It created heavy and layered dresses that were very uncomfortable to wear.

The fashion industry has helped women present their thoughts and ideologies to the world. From the days of advocating for rights to vote, to wearing power suits that helped them lay claim to equality at the professional level, fashion has been both, a women’s constant companion and a reflection of society’s mores.

Author Bio:

Harsh is the co-founder Fynd a first-of-its-kind, e-commerce fashion platform, with a live inventory of 8K plus stores catering to more than 8 million customers. He is an engineer from IIT Bombay and has 7+ years of experience in the field of Fashion Retail, Hospitality, Management Consulting and Human Resources. He is currently working on expanding Fynd’s presence on to the global radar.

Image of Noyonika Chatterji in Sabyasachi Couture by Sou Boyy – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

Top Hair Care Tips For Mature Women

Whether we realise it or not, our hair is a huge part of how we look and can even affect how we feel about ourselves. Ageing is an emotional process, and as our hair changes with age, it’s easy to see why caring for it to promote healthy, strong hair for longer is so important.

From changes in colour to loss of volume, we can see a number of different changes as we age and while everything from a simple hair dye to the assistance of a hair transplant specialist can help us reverse certain changes, we should be prepared for those we can’t prevent but taking good care of healthy locks is a must regardless.

To find out more about just what age could mean for your hair, and how you can take better care of every strand, read on below.

What Does Age Do To Our Hair?

While hair loss and colour changes are fairly commonly recognised effects of ageing, there are other things that could have to face as the years pass by.

From finer strands that grow much more slowly, to changes in overall texture and a dull look, here are some of the most common, but lesser-known effects, ageing could have on our hair:

  • Hair Loss

Hair loss is a fear for many women, and while some of us could bypass the entire ageing process with a thick head of hair, it isn’t the likely outcome. Thinning hair through hair loss is common, simply because it becomes more brittle and breakable with time.

It can have us reaching for the styling equipment to try and work around the lack of volume we might be experiencing or researching the nearest hair transplant clinic if things get particularly thin on top, but you should never feel any shame in hair loss.

  • Colour Change

As much as we might try and deny it, our hair goes grey with age. Our melatonin levels reduce as we grow older, which results in colourless and lifeless hair and for some of us, this can, unfortunately, kick in early.

In the case of premature greying, it tends to be a genetic issue, however, stress, unhealthy diets, lack of sleep, illness and extreme lifestyles can also have an effect on how fast we ‘go grey’.

  • It Becomes Finer

If you were born with thick, dark hair, then your hair growing finer could show far more than if your hair was thinner from the beginning. Hair gradually begins to grow more finely, making your overall look thinner and feel lighter.

  • It Can Break Easily

As hair loses protein, it becomes more breakable as it loses strength. Keratin protein is what makes our hair able to withstand being tied up, pulled and tossed about, but as these lower, as we grow older, our hair can become much weaker and breaks much more easily.

  • Slow Growth

The growth rate of your hair, just like your growth rate overall, will slow down as you age. Due to the weakened state of the strands, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to grow it as long as you may have once been able to and could result in thinner-looking hair.

  • It Could Change Texture

As protein and nutrient levels change, the texture of your hair could change too. Dead straight hair could start frizzing up, curly hair could go straight, and hair that was once soft without fail could become coarse and difficult to manage.

Grey hair is naturally coarser due to the lower melanin levels, so ensuring that you’re taking good care of it could make it far more manageable.

What Can We Do To Take Better Care Of It?

So, we’ve mentioned that you should be taking care of your hair a lot, but how exactly should you go about that?

Your regular haircare routine might not cut it anymore, and finding a new one could seem like you’re fighting a losing battle. However, as long as you take the following tips into account, it could be far more manageable than you think.

  • Keep It Nourished

Moisture-rich, nourished hair is always going to be easier to handle than coarse strands, but more importantly, nourished hair is healthy hair.

While regular hair treatments are recommended for easier upkeep, picking out products dedicated to replenishing moisture in your hair can be a great way to bridge the gap between appointments and keep everything in a much healthier condition.

  • Keep It Short Or Well-Trimmed

With hair that’s easily breakable or that is thinning out, keeping your hair shorter can actually make things look much thicker and much healthier. As our hair begins to deteriorate in health, it can become thin and wispy at the ends, but with regular haircuts, this can be avoided.

If you want to keep your hair longer, regular trimming can help you avoid this issue too, but make sure that you follow the rest of the steps here to ensure it stays healthy and strong.

  • Protect Weaker Hair

If your hair is naturally weak and none of the strengthening products seems to be working, it could be time to break out protective measures.

Heat-protection sprays can keep your hair from being damaged while blow drying or styling, while certain oils, mousses and moisturisers are designed especially for protecting your hair against whatever the world wants to throw at it!

  • Experiment With Styling

While it’s advisable that you avoid hairdryers, curling irons or straighteners due to the intense heat and the potential for damage, experimenting with your style could help you disguise or limit how thin your hair may look and ultimately increase your confidence.

Mild volumising serums could give a new lease of life to your hair, so you can put away the hair ties and leave it down and feel confident in how you look!

Why not try styling your hair towards your face rather than away from it? Or vice versa! Giving yourself a new look overall will not only help you improve confidence but keeping your hair moving can prevent it from going flat and stiff over time.

  • Be Careful With Colouring

Greying hair can be an uncomfortable point for anyone, and reaching for the nearest box dye is an understandable reaction. However, you need to be careful with what you put on your hair if you want to keep it strong and healthy.

Box dyes are notoriously bad for your hair, and while this often isn’t an issue for women with strong, healthy hair, as we age we need to take every care to keep our hair away from harm.

If you truly want to dye your hair to disguise the greys, opt for visiting the salon instead. They’ll have dyes that are much better for your hair, all the moisturising products that work and a much better understanding of what your hair needs to keep it in good quality.

As we age, our hair will change and coming to terms with these changes is often where we can struggle. From thinning locks to changes in colour, our overall look changes as our hair does and it can be sometimes difficult to come to terms with.

However, with the right care for your hair, you can keep it strong, healthy and easier to manage than you might think.

7 Returnship Programs For Indian Women In Tech

Are you a woman looking to return to work after taking a break? Here are the top 7 returnship programs for Indian women in tech.

Mobility, marriage, and maternity are just some of the reasons why women pause their careers in tech.

After taking these breaks, women face a hard time trying to get back to their careers further acerbating the constraints that hinder women’s professional advancement.

In return, the workforce tends to lose the diversity aspect of a vibrant and promising population. Organizations are increasingly realizing that women at work need to be constantly nurtured.

A fast-moving economy like India cannot take full advantage of the skills possessed by professional women if the women are not facilitated to return to work after taking a break.

In fact, according to an article published on Forbes and authored by Tracy Saunders, it is about time hiring trends shifted to accommodate working mothers.

In an attempt to encourage mothers and women to rejoin the labor force to fill the current talent crunch in tech, various companies have created returnship programs.

Returnee programs are emerging as a progressive way for employers to tap into the potential presented by women, while also offering women a good restart strategy.

The most notable aspect of these programs is the emergence of training and placement programs created to reignite the careers for moms going back to work.

Over the last few years, companies have begun to consider the possibility of facilitating women to get back to work as a way of reducing talent shortage that results from the untimely exit of women from the workforce.

To facilitate such programs, the Indian Government has put in place strict policies for maternity, with recent proposals being made to increase the duration of maternity leave.

While such steps are laudable, there is still need for more companies to facilitate the career progress of women in tech, so that they do not have to compromise careers for family.

This article looks at 7 return to work programs for moms at the top companies with returnship programs in India.

1. The Incredible Intuit Again Returnee Program

The Intuit internship for female returnee programs is a chance for women technologists who had been on a break to resume professional work.

The amazingly successful program not only offers a chance for the professionals to work for one of the top-ranked tech companies in India, but also offers technical and other forms of training to sharpen the candidates’ professional skills.

According to the center for women in technology, a critical aspect of returnee internships, like the one offered by Intuit, is that such reskilling programs are meant to enhance a women-friendly workplace.

In fact, such programs are characteristically geared towards professionals who are taking a second shot at their careers after taking a long break to focus on personal commitments.

As part of the talent enhancement program, returnees are allowed to work on projects, which draw on their experiences and existing skills. The Intuit internships allow employees to rebuild their skills and confidence in a supportive environment.

The company’s 6-month returnship program also offers mentoring, training, and access to cooperate networks. Such an environment gives, to moms, a chance to assess the role and see whether they would like to get back into the cooperate world.

2. Back to Work program at GHC India

For Indian women looking for a second chance to reignite their tech career, The Grace Hopper Celebration India (GHCI) conferences offer appealing job opportunities.

Through the program, returning professionals get a chance to connect with various organizations, build their skills, and reignite their self-confidence.

The GHCI back to work program also offers a chance for candidates to learn and network as they kick-start their journey back to the cooperate world. During the conference, candidates can expect:

  • Workshops that are tailored to the unique needs of participants
  • Panel discussions that feature professionals who have successfully resumed their careers
  • Great working opportunities
  • Soft and technical skills sessions

To take advantage of the opportunities, applicants are required to submit a resume to the GHCI database, even when unable to take part in the conference.

This is because top tech firms have access to the resume database and can reach out to applicants with job offers.

3. IBM Bring Her Back Program for Mid-Career Women

One of the few companies that offer comprehensive returnship programs for Indian women is IBM.

Faced with a staggering number of women in the STEM areas who leave the workforce in the middle of their career, many employers in the tech sector, including IBM have been searching for ways to bring back these talented women back to the labour force.

IBM’s tech re-entry program for mid-career women is aimed at addressing the overall skill shortages in the tech sector, while also enhancing inclusion and diversity.

Women targeted by the IBM program are typically mothers who have exited the professional scene to raise their children or in response to a workplace culture that does not permit balancing of career and family.

While these women do not intend to exit the professional scene completely, a career gap in the fast-paced tech sector can make re-entry difficult.

In the case of IBM, the re-entry program is a 12-week internship that begins with an orientation for three days, followed by chance to be placed in one of IBM workplaces.

Returnees get actual work experience, whether in programming or data analytics. The main idea here is to generate a smooth transition for returnees before they can be actively hired.

4. Rekindle with Amazon India Returnships

Another incredible tech giants internships program for women returnees is provided by Amazon India.

The Rekindle program is an initiative aimed at encouraging women who had hitherto been on a professional break to reenter the workforce. As part of the program, the firm offers focused mentoring, structured onboarding, on the job learning, and flexible work arrangement for candidates.

5. PayPal Recharge for Women Returning to Work in Tech

In an impressive attempt to bridge the gender disparity in workplace composition, PayPal in India initiated its Recharge Program in 2015, with the goal of assisting women technologists to come re-start career after a long career break.

The program, which runs for 6 weeks, seeks to eliminate the stigma in India, which comes with taking a career break to focus on family.

6. Vapasi’s ThoughtWorks Mid-Career Internships

Vapasi, which means “come back” or “return”, in Hindi, is an impressive program targeting women technologists, particularly developers.

The program, which is spread over a period of four weeks, assists returning women developers to sharpen their programming skills through object-oriented programming practices.

After going through the program, candidates are better placed to access good jobs for moms returning to the workforce.

7. Microsoft’s Springboard for Women in Tech Industry

In 2014, Microsoft India initiated its Women in Tech program, which together with the springboard program, is geared towards bringing more women into the IT industry.

The Springboard program is designed to help women on a sabbatical get back to their tech paths. The program is particularly attractive due to its flexibility, where candidates are free to choose their preferred projects.

Do Not Be Left Out, Get Qualified Candidates through Returnee Training

Organizing programs for returning professionals is fast becoming a popular hiring strategy for many companies in the tech sector.

By implementing such training as part of your human resource strategy, you not only get to encourage diversity and gender equality in your hiring processes but also get to benefit from the immense wealth of experience brought onboard by these women technologists.

About the author:

Alice Berg is a blogger and a career advisor at Skillroads career builder, who received a degree in Social Work and Applied Social Studies. Now she helps people to find their own way in life, gives career advice and guidance, helps young people to prepare for their careers. You can find Alice on Twitter.

Mobility, marriage, and maternity are just some of the reasons why women pause their careers in tech. Returnee programs are emerging as a progressive way for employers to tap into the potential presented by women, while also offering women a good restart strategy. Are you a woman looking to return to work after taking a break? Here are the top 7 returnship programs for Indian women in tech. #womenintech #technology #careeradvice #India