United Nations Populations Fund (UNFPA) as part of its asset-building framework identified three key elements of women’s asset ownership: women’s ability to earn, own and inherit assets. This includes investing in women’s ability to earn and make a living, to own assets and have access to resources; to create an enabling environment for equal inheritance rights, and finally to control the resources that can make them self-reliant and independent.

It is building upon this framework that Girls Count Coalition, in April 2018 supported by the Ford Foundation began an intervention promoting non-traditional skills and livelihoods among women and girls in BBBP districts and connecting them with livelihoods in trades that are dominated by men. The intervention was rolled out with on-ground partners across Ahmedabad, Bilaspur, Howrah, Indore, Pune and Ranchi.

As a coalition addressing gender-based discrimination, Girls Count believes that one of the fundamental pillars of patriarchy is gender-based roles and occupations. And any endeavour to challenge this systemic gendered division of labour calls for revisiting and redefining the existing roles and occupations that reinstate the defined gender roles steeped in tradition and patriarchy. And it is only by investing in the ability of women and girls we can bring about transformational change in the narrative of gender-based roles and occupations.

In keeping with this belief, our intervention focuses on empowering women and girls with non-traditional skill-based livelihood programme. In other words, the project aims at imparting training to women and girls in skills such as mobile repairing, two-wheeler repairing, as an electrician, a carpenter, a cab driver, among others; especially those domains that have hitherto been seen as male-dominated areas of work.

The project design integrates a life skill component within the skill-based livelihood training programme. This has been done to enable women and girls to not only gain skills but also to ensure that they are capacitated to challenge gender roles.

An empowered woman or girl is also able to realize her rights, make herself heard, and actively participate in all decision making processes both within her immediate surroundings and the society at large.

We also realize that it is not enough to empower a woman or a girl it is equally significant to create an enabling environment. This led us to also reach out and work with their families and immediate communities.

Details of the Intervention (April, 2019 to March, 2020)

The project primarily aims training and creating development opportunities for resource-poor women and girls in non-traditional skills, and also increasing their access to them. Since its inception in April 2018 to March 2020, the intervention sought to train 1200 women and girls from resource-poor settings. Till date through our implementing partners across the 6 districts, we are close to reaching our target.

The project has a two-fold approach of skill building namely, direct in-house training through partner NGOs and secondly through training associates (for hard skill). The training program includes three major components such as life skill training, gender orientation and technical skill training.

The non-traditional skills that are being provided to women and girls are, mobile phone repairing, two-wheeler repairing, three-wheeler driving (e-rickshaw and auto rickshaw), plumbing, cab driving, petrol pump attendants, LED light making, electrical work, wall painting, carpentry and polishing, security guard, home appliance repairing and bookbinding.

On Ground Implementation


In Ahmedabad, our partner Saath Charitable Trust has trained 211 women and girls over the last two years. Of the 211 women trained, 46 have been gainfully employed. While 14 women work as electricians, 7 as two-wheeler mechanics, 19 as petrol pump attendants and 6 women as plumbers/ technician RO water purifier. Another group of 12 girls is working as house painter.


Our partner in Bilaspur CARM-DAKSH has trained a total of 175 women and girls in various skills ranging from three-wheeler driving (e-rickshaw and auto rickshaw) to home appliance repairing to mobile repairing. Of the 175, 79 women have received their driving license for e-rickshaw, of which 8 women are driving e-rickshaw presently and another group of 6 women and girls have set up their own two-wheeler garage called ‘Sakhi.’


In Howrah, our implementing partner Nari-O-Sishu Kalyan Kendra (NOSKK) has trained 165 women and girls over the last two years in, mobile repairing, three-wheeler driving (e-rickshaw), four wheeler driving, carpentry and polishing and electrical work.

Of the 165 trained 24 women are gainfully employed. While 6 are working as mobile technicians, 15 are driving e-rickshaws and 3 women are working as carpenters.


Samaan Social Development Society is our partner implementing the NTSL project. Over the period of two years, 177 women and girls have been trained as two-wheeler mechanics.

Of the 177 women trained, 32 women have been placed as two-wheeler mechanics in various service centers across the city. A group of 6 women have set up their own repairing garages with the help and support from Samaan Society.


In Pune, Centre for Youth Development and Activities (CYDA) is our implementing partner. They have trained 152 women and girls in mobile phone repairing, two-wheeler repairing, as petrol pump attendants, LED Light making, as industrial electricians, auto rickshaw drivers, wall painters and cab drivers.

Of the 152 women, 39 have been employed. While 20 women work as petrol pump attendants, 1 woman is working as an electrician, 3 women are two-wheeler mechanics at Hero Honda and 15 women are making LED lights.


Life Education And Development Support (LEADS) is our partner in Ranchi. They have trained 215 women and girls in two years as security guards, housekeepers, in bookbinding, furniture polishing, two-wheeler repairing and solar device assembling.

Of the 215 women and girls trained, 25 women have been employed. While 14 women work as security guards, 4 women are bookbinders and 7 women are furniture polishers.

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