A STITCH IN TIME

Usha In­ter­na­tional is em­pow­er­ing women through hun­dreds of sewing schools. By Mridu Rai

India Today - - BREAKING NEWS -

Afive day res­i­den­tial work­shop on the art of cos­tume, de­sign and drap­ing in the con­text of theatre, film and daily life, ti­tled Adishakti Mas­ter­class, was con­ducted by de­signer Sonam Dubal in Pondicherry. Adishakti Mas­ter­class is an ini­tia­tive of Usha Janome which at present runs 1,000 sewing schools across the coun­try for women. Apart from this, there are 2,500 Usha Si­lai Schools across ru­ral In­dia which teach women how to stitch, tai­lor and re­pair sewing ma­chines.

Usha Sewing Schools charge a fee that ranges from Rs 700 – Rs 3,100 while the du­ra­tion of the course varies from 1 month to 6 months. The fee struc­ture for Usha Si­lai Schools varies from vil­lage to vil­lage and ranges from ap­prox­i­mately Rs 20 per month to Rs 250 per month for a 3-months course.

“These schools pro­vide sewing skills that can be utilised for per­sonal use or to gen­er­ate in­come. Once a woman liv­ing in a ru­ral area re­cieves train­ing she can then con­duct a teach­ing pro­gramme for oth­ers in her vil­lage. Apart from be­ing a source of in­come these cour­ses also help to im­prove a woman’s so­cial sta­tus in so­ci­ety,” ex­plains Ch­haya Sri­ram, man­ag­ing di­rec­tor, Usha In­ter­na­tional.

Train­ing day at a Si­lai School in Andhra Pradesh

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