Shadhika provides general support to Uddami, a computer-training center in Kolkata. Uddami teaches computer and soft skills to enhance and support the potential of over 100 women and youth from low-income communities so that they can develop sustainable livelihoods.
Computer training for young women increases their value in many ways. If they have a marketable skill, marriage can often be delayed. When this training leads to a lucrative job, the young woman’s importance to the family grows because she is helping the family financially. Jobs outside the home also increase self-sufficiency and self-esteem. The supportive environment and focused training that Uddami provides has allowed female graduates many more choices than they usually have in a society where women are not valued.
Today, Uddami is staffed and managed entirely by its graduates and 80% of its costs are supported by its for-profit arm, Uran Software, which is also staffed by Uddami graduates and which provides “backroom” computer support to firms around the globe.