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Investment in women and girls: Proven path to reduce poverty

Beneficiaries of St Joseph Tailoring Institute, West Godavari District, Andhra Pradesh, India (Photo supplied)

St Joseph Tailoring Institute, West Godavari District, Andhra Pradesh, India was formed as part of the Church's mission to assist people in reestablishing their economies through employment and self-sufficiency.
India is predominantly an agrarian country where 70 percent of its population still depends on agriculture for its livelihood. 
Agricultural labor occupies the lowest place in the socio-economic structure of the rural set up in India. The percentage of agricultural laborers to total workers has increased over some time in rural India. They eke out their livelihood by working on various farms for wages. 

St Joseph Tailoring Institute has created job opportunities for agricultural laborers from nine villages of Tadikelapudi Parish in Eluru Diocese of Andhra Pradesh, South India.
Most of the agricultural laborers in Tadikalapudi, Sagipadu, K S Ramavaram, Cheepurgudem, Veerampalem, and Ratnagiri villages are landless and so they depend on wage paid employment.
From 2020, this sewing program aims to empower and elevate women to help their families and households. Most women benefit from this program, said Father Nathaniel, the parish priest of Tadikelapudi. 

The three-month course for free is not only for Church members but also for the surrounding community, said Father Nathaniel.
Mrs Kurma Devamatha, a widow who benefited from this course said, “I can sew clothes and earn my living to educate my two daughters.”
Parish of Palse, Italy Foreign collaboration support enabled us to provide 150+ sewing machines so far. 
The parish provided a sewing machine to Bhagya (29 years old) who is a single woman. Now with the help of a sewing machine, she started her business at home. Though it was a small village, she is earning to run her family, and educate her children. 
“I am happy and this helping hand from St Joseph Tailoring Institute I hope that I can contribute something to the Church and society as my effort to pay it forward,” Mrs. Shaik Meerabhai said. - Pujitha Nagalli/RVA Telugu 


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