Self Employed Women’s Association
- The Urban Union
- The Rural Union
- Jeevika
- Jeevan Shala
- The Federation of Co-operatives
- SEWA Social Security Net
- SEWA Marketing Support
- SEWA Bank
- SEWA Bharat
- SEWA Accounts
  9. SEWA Academy
  9.1 Introduction
  Developing women’s strengths & abilities, facilitating their exposure to new information, knowledge & skills and stimulating their growth & leadership have been main concerns of SEWA. Capacity development of SEWA members has always been an integral part of SEWA activity since its inception. In order to further the SEWA movement among the members, the SEWA Academy was formally registered in the year 1991.

SEWA Academy is the focal point of SEWA’s each training and capacity building effort. In a very basic sense, SEWA Academy functions as ‘University’, providing our members their first introduction to a formal learning environment. It is also known as the “training center” for the poor self-employed women. SEWA Academy plays an important role in furthering the SEWA movement among the women. In a grassroots movement like SEWA’s, leadership must blossom from below so that the organization can remain dynamic, effective, and unified. To evoke and inspire such grassroots’ leadership, education is fundamental. Besides education and capacity building, it is also important to understand the life and work of self-employed woman and carry that understanding to the women themselves as well as to policy makers, activists, academics, and the general public.

The following are the major activities: member education; orientation training of resource persons on SEWA’s principles, strategies and approaches; media resource development; and research at field level to feed into and update the training activities.
  9.2 Major Activities
  Given this background, the activities undertaken by the Academy are as follows.

  9.2.1 Training
  Our training programs help to develop women’s self-esteem, confidence and leadership skills. These training programs help to take further the SEWA movement. These trainings help to develop the local women’s self esteem, confidence and leadership. SEWA believes in participatory training and has developed a cadre of barefoot trainers from its members. These barefoot trainers impart trainings to other members. Different tools such as audio-visual equipments, games, posters, group discussions, role-play and field visits are used to impart these trainings.

The training programs conducted for the members fall in two main area viz. a) vocational trainings and (b) capacity building trainings. Different topics covered under the training programs are SEWA ideology, objectives, values, importance of organizational strength, economy, the importance of literacy and research. Details of different training programs conducted during the year are given below.
  Various Trainings Conducted During the Year
Sr. No. Name Of The Training No. Of Trainings No. Of Trainees
1 Members’ Education 1 37
2 SEWA Movement 69 1,756
3 Orientation to SEWA 4 97
4 Organisation 4 158
5 Kadam 8 149
6 Training To Trainers 2 57
7 SEWA Bharat 3 69
8 S.G.S.Y training (Organisation training) 14 284
9 S.G.S.Y training (Leadership training) 13 266
  Other Activities :
  Conducted Training with SEWA Lucknow.

Given Training process information to Kaori Honda – research student from Japan, who spend his one month at Academy. In that he was taken face to face interview of training women who came in training. Also he was taken interview of spearhead team, Banksathi, old bank members.

Prepare ‘sangathan’ training module.
  9.2.2 Literacy
  SEWA’s members are women. They are poor, self-employed and illiterate too. On demand of these members, SEWA had started literacy classes in the year 1992. The classes are organised in the members’ own locality. The curriculum and methodology for literacy classes is designed based on SEWA’s focus.

In year 2004 as per the collected data, Ahmedabad city and villages have in all 93 divisions working with 1395 women. During the year, a special programme under ICT - computer literacy for adolescent girls was initiated at the demand of our literacy. The objective of this course was to provide the members’ daughters with skills for future employment generation, as well as equip them to help the existing business of their parents with this they are learn primary English language which is useful in their daily life and easy to understand computer and their commands. In Computer literacy they learned MS-Office Package and how to use internet. 70 girls participated in the 6-month training programme.
  9.2.3 Research
  The research team of SEWA Academy undertakes action oriented research with a unique grass roots perspective utilizing scientific based research tools, so as to bring SEWA members in the main stream of the world. The research team serves as a link between policy makers, government officials and our members.

Activities undertaken in the year 2004
- In year 2004 SEWA Academy’s researchers went to research institutes of Mumbai and Pune, which led to their development.
- Researchers of SEWA Academy increased the usage of S.P.S.S software.
- Presentation of study on Akashganga was made at Youth Festival organised in Delhi.
- Final Presentation of study on Garment with N.C.A.E.R. -Delhi and SEWA Academy researchers at Delhi.
- Research methodology training taken from Yashda, Pune, the training was given by N.I.R.D. institute, Hyderabad.
- Total Research – 26
- Reports Prepared by research Team - 15
- Research ongoing - 11
- Some of the completed Research Studies :-

a) SEWA @ Thirty
b) Reforming the Poor (Agriculture, Construction, Gum Collector)
c) Study of Child Care
d) Our Body our Life: Part-2
- Profiles prepared by Research Division – 9
- Proposals prepared by Research Division – 14
- Write-ups prepared by Research Division – 10
  9.2.4 Communication
  The struggle and achievements of the poor self-employed women are communicated with the help of print and electronic media. Following are the major media resources:
  a) Ansooya
  Ansooya is fortnightly news letter for SEWA members. Different stories of the members are published in this newsletter and the issues of the women are taken to the macro level.
Annual Members Distributed at welfare centre Lifetime Members Complimentary Total
1,485 311 1,086 160 3,042
  Through ‘Ansooya Feature Service’ this year two article published ­ “Cancer atle Cancel nahi pan kem nahi sir” – Jayhind, Rakheval, Mumbai Samachar. ­ “Kagal mathi kanchan melvata behno” – Jayhind, Rakheval, ‘Avaj Sachaino’.
  b) Akashganga
  Akashganga magazine is published every month in order to ensure holistic development of the adolescent girls. This magazine contains different information on health, puzzles, poems, history, science, stories and quizzes. The girls also contribute their own stories, poems and other information.
Year Published Sold per month Complimentary Total per month
2004 12 Periodicals 1,475 40 1,515
  c) Video SEWA
  Video SEWA is an audio-visual tool, which effectively takes the issues of the poor women at the national and international level. With the use of latest technology this medium has proved to be very effective.
  Activities undertaken by Video SEWA in the current year are listed below.
Activity Units Viewers
Replays 398 16,046
Duplication 673  
Logging 221  
Edit 20  
  At National Level - Shooting
­ At Mumbai IT Users Award function.
­ At Delhi One World Mission " 2007 Future Plan" Workshop.
Self Employed Women's Association
SEWA Reception Centre, Opp. Victoria Garden, Bhadra, Ahmedabad - 380 001. India.
Phone : 91-79-25506444 / 25506477 / 25506441, Fax : 91 - 79 - 25506446, Email
Design and Developed by STWI