08 December 2019

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ICECD transformed over 2000 Tribals into Entrepreneurs

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There are over 5 million tribals or adivasis in the state of Gujarat (15 % of the total population). They mainly inhabit the rugged terrain adjoining the Aravalis, the western ridges of the Vindhya and Satpura mountains and the northern slopes of the Sahyadri Ranges. The tribal belt in Gujarat consists of the districts of Danga, Surat, Broach, Baroda, Panchmahals, Sabarkantha and Banaskantha. Tribals such as Siddhis, Rabaris, Padhars, Mers and Bharwads live in the coastal Saurashtra districts of Junagarh, Jamnagar and Kutch. They work as casual labourers or cattle breeders. They also find employment in the ports. The tribal groups, such as, the Koknas, Gamits, Dhodias, Vasawas and Garasias live on agriculture.

Self employment and entrepreneurship development in tribal areas is often constrained by (a) insufficient infrastructure, market awareness and funds, (b) lack of attitude to perceive opportunities, to organize resources and set up and run the business successfully. There is dying need to mainstream this population as development partners.

ICECD (International Centre for Entrepreneurship and Career Development) therefore took up the challenge of inculcating and developing entrepreneurs amongst tribal of Gujarat with support from Tribal Commissioner’s Office, Govt. of Gujarat. It started with the objective of reaching the unreachable 1932 in 10 districts of 36 Talukas of Gujarat. Leading tribal to self reliance and entrepreneurship and breaking away from “dependency syndrome” was a challenging task ICECD made special efforts to motivate the tribal using different innovative methods and faced all odds to get forma banks to accept these tribals as entrepreneurs by establishing their credibility.

The relentless efforts & systematic follow up resulted in more than 70 % trained tribals initiating economic activities. With more than 50% tribal women engaged in activities which have local markets, the tribal entrepreneurs’ journey towards development has just begun but is most definitely irreversible.  One can evidently sense amongst them a strong desire to be self reliant, to be economically independent.

Approximately 2065 Tribal men and women have been developed by ICECD to start their own small business in 10 Tribal Districts of Gujarat (Bharuch, Dahod, Panchanmal, Sabarkantha, Basnakanth, Surat, Tapi, Valsad, Narmada, Dang.)

A new confidence has been instilled amongst development workers and policy makers to open a new chapter in harnessing vast untapped potential amongst tribals of Gujarat as mainstream partners.

ICECD has enabled development of tribals at all levels be it in social, economical, health, educational or industrial sector. Tribal Youth have been trained by ICECD with a special focus on mainstreaming them into society and the economy.

ICECD’s unique model for Tribal Youth Development begins with awareness camps organized at the local habitats of these tribals. This is followed by a selection process, foundation inputs for self-employment, Entrepreneurship Development Programme (EDP) and Technical Training. The technical training for these trainees is arranged at ICECD Campus itself. A project report is then prepared by the tribals and they are then linked with banks for loans. After obtaining a bank loan, the tribal launches his/her venture/business.  ICECD does hand holding till they are well on their way towards a steady business.

These tribals are linked with the local market for employment and business generation and within 6 to 12 months, they start earning Rs. 5000 to 15000 per month.


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