Syed Sehrish Asgar receives prestigious SKOCH award

SRINAGAR, APRIL 12: (KNS)  Dr Syed Sehrish Asgar, MD Jammu Kashmir Rural livelihood Mission (JKRLM) recieved the SKOCH Award for outstanding contribution towards the economic development of rural women under programme SAATH.
In recognition of the achievements by the J&K Rural Livelihood Mission, under the programme SAATH, the SKOCH  foundation has conferred the prestigious SKOCH Award upon the JKRLM. Mission Director  JKRLM, Dr Syed Sehrish Asgar conceptualised and implemented the idea of providing a platform for the Rural Women to enhance their livelihoods and add different verticals to the business possibilities for the rural SHG members. This idea materialised into a full fledged program  called ‘SAATH’ which was launched by Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha on 1st Sep 2021. SAATH  is a rural entrepreneurship acceleration programme, helping rural women become self reliant. JKRLM had initiated a comprehensive mentoring, under “SAATH programme" for selected SHG members, who have set-up enterprises under the SAATH Programme. Under the programme, SHG members are being exposed to various marketing processes which would enable them to transform their existing enterprises into higher order enterprises at a large scale. SHG entrepreneurs are facilitated on value additions, marketing, branding, forward linkages, sales, business management in order to upscale their production and sales. After extensive interviewing and observations, out of 5000 SHG members, (100) SHG women entrepreneurs have been identified who are being supported in developing higher level enterprises.
The initiatives have played a pivotal role in poverty alleviation, by federating about 5 lac rural  women into over  60000 self help groups, out of which 1 lac rural women have been federated into SHGs during the Financial year 2021-22 .As of now the Mission has facilitated capitalisation of about Rs 1161 Cr. With a strong emphasis on transforming rural  economies , UMEED is working on seeding entrepreneurial thinking in women for rejuvenating traditional arts & crafts, for their economic independence and empowerment.
In an effort to provide market linkage platform for about 5 lac rural SHG members to exhibit their products and to connect directly with consumers as well as buyers, the first of its kind, UMEED women's Haat ,was  set up by JKRLM. UMEED women's Haat  is a women empowerment initiative by the Jammu Kashmir Rural Livelihoods Mission (JKRLM) to bring the rural women self-help group members under one platform where they can showcase their skills, sell their products and build connections with potential market players. 
Furthermore JKRLM has initiated the process of providing Door To Door Banking Services in rural areas which are an important component of Financial Inclusion and ensuring sustainable development. 
JK Rural Livelihood Mission has taken steps towards promoting digital transactions and providing door to door banking service among rural areas through Financial Inclusion Resource Persons.The Resource Persons enable Financial Inclusion to hitherto unserved areas and enable livelihoods for thousands of women.
Another major initiative was to promote door to door digital banking and financial services in remote areas of the UT, for which JKRLM launched  Mission ‘One Gram Panchayat-One  DIGI-Pay Sakhi’ in the UT, the DIGI-Pay facility is being provided in 2000 remote villages of the UT and in the first phase, 125 women from Self Help Groups from across the Jammu and Kashmir Division have been selected as DIGI-Pay Sakhis equipped with AEPs devices . Apart from depositing money, the rural population also avails the benefits of the additional banking and financial services such as Pradhan Mantri Kisan Jhaandhan Yojana, registration of Kisan Credit Card etc,
Another major initiative was to make SHG products available on e-commerce platforms like Amazon, Flipkart and Meesho, thus helping the rural women connecting to global e-commerce platforms thus increasing the scale of their business.
Commenting on the award received by her Dr Sehrish said, “This award is a recognition of the efforts of the thousands of women in Jammu and Kashmir who are transforming the rural economy by becoming agents of positive change and growth. We will continue to work hard and strive for greater excellence and better opportunities in the goal of nation building”.(KNS) 

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