Diageo and United Spirits support young women in India

25 June, 2015

Diageo and its subsidiary in India, United Spirits (USL), has announced phase II of the Young Women Social Entrepreneurship Development Programme in India.

At a reception in Delhi hosted by British High Commissioner in India, Sir James Bevan and Maneka Gandhi, Union cabinet minister for Women & Child Development, the programme was dedicated to the women of India.

Launched in September 2013, the programme in its second year aims to contribute to entrepreneurship education by training women master trainers, and through them train a larger group of women to become entrepreneurs. It will also support and mentor innovative ideas, stemming from the workshops, with the potential to mature as social enterprises.

After the conclusion of phase I earlier this year, Phase II takes forth the partnership with the Indian Institute of Management, Kozhikode (IIM-K) and more than 16 new organisations, to conduct  training workshops across India. This training focuses on practical application and shared learning incorporating content related with management, finance, communication, leadership, marketing and fundraising. A batch of 37 Master Trainers drawn from these organisations will execute this programme.

Anand Kripalu, managing director & CEO, United Spirits and member of the Diageo global executive committee, said: “At the heart of our business model is the ambition to create an impact in the communities where we operate. For us, empowerment stands for a woman’s right to have access to choices and resources which can influence society and the economy. Through the second phase of the Young Women Social Entrepreneurship Development Programme in collaboration with the British Council, we are proud to empower dis-advantaged women through social entrepreneurship by nurturing employability, economic independence and an entrepreneurial spirit.”

As part of new 2020 sustainability and responsibility targets, which include a commitment to ‘Building Thriving Communities’, Diageo has empowered 115,000 women globally since 2012 through its initiative Plan W.

Phase I of the programme in India saw 24 master trainers conduct 48 training workshops across the country enabling a spirit of social entrepreneurship among 1,200+ women. Phase I also gave the programme partners a firm footing in the social enterprise domain. On the conclusion of both phases of the programme, a critical mass of 60 master trainers in different cities in India will cascade training to 4,000 beneficiaries thereby promoting social entrepreneurship amongst the women in India.

Rob Lynes, director, British Council India said: “Women represent almost half of the population of India, share a greater amount of work than men but get much less compensation, hence making them dependent and disadvantaged. Currently, only 39% of Indian women are formally employed, compared to 81% of Indian men. It is reasonable to assume that a high proportion of employed women can boost the long term growth curve. To help address this, the programme aims to create a ripple effect and disseminate social enterprise expertise to women in communities across India. They will inspire other women and support more sustainable and inclusive growth.”

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