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Sinead OConnor

Sustainable Development Goal Number 5 is collectively reaching for gender equality. Across GVI globally, thousands of people work towards gender equality and empowering women and girls through education and training, access to health facilities and knowledge, and ensuring effective participation. Last year alone, 380 women took advantage of leadership skills training, and 5252 women benefited from educational support.

Here at GVI Kerala, India, our women’s empowerment program is made up of a number of diverse project partners in the community. From working on life skills education at a local girls school, to discussing the changing role of women at a college, no two days are the same.

One of our partners is a local councillor who feels passionately about improving the lives of the women in his constituency. We run two sessions there each week; the first is communicative English sessions to help build the women’s confidence and conversational English, and the second is an IT workshop.

There are many reasons women come to our IT workshops; some want to be able to support their children, some want to find a job, and some just want to learn a new skill.

For two of the women, they are trying to build their own tourism business and know they need these skills to get it off the ground. Over the past few weeks we’ve got them set up on email so they can communicate with potential and current customers, given them basic Excel training so they can learn how to manage a budget, and taught them how to use PowerPoint to create brochures and reports. And that’s only the beginning; we’re so excited to see what’s next for them.

Here’s what our women’s empowerment coordinator has to say:

“My name is Midhu and the I’m coordinator for the women’s empowerment program here at GVI Kerala. As a local woman, I would like to share some of my experiences.

I’m very proud that through the volunteers, I can achieve a lot for my community. The IT workshops are a great example of that. Two of the women are building their own business and that makes me so happy.

I feel really passionate about what I’m doing for my own community and also helping volunteers develop their skills, confidence and passion.

GVI has given me the opportunity to work with such a good team; together we’ve created a family atmosphere where we support and nurture each other to build the best programs.”

To learn more about what GVI is doing to support gender equality around the world, check out the Impact and Ethics Report:  

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