IKEA commits around Rs 117.76 cr to empower 1mn women in India

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New Delhi: The IKEA Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the Swedish home furnishing major, has partnered with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Xyntéo and India Development Foundation (IDF) to provide employment and entrepreneurship opportunities to one million underprivileged women across India.

The three-year programme, with a budget of Euro 16 million (around Rs 117.76 crore), will focus on Karnataka, Maharashtra, Telengana and the National Capital Region.

The programme will be implemented by the UNDP, Xyntéo and IDF.

“We believe that women can be the most important catalysts for change in their children’s lives as well as in society more generally. By empowering women, we can improve children’s health, education and future and that’s good for everyone in India,” IKEA Foundation CEO Per Heggenes said.

Objectives of the programme are to create a positive impact on the lives and livelihoods of women through training, employment and entrepreneurial skills development, test and establish an innovative model of a public-private partnership that responds to the aspirations and needs of women, and identified needs of the private sector and establish a continuum that connects education, to skills, jobs and growth.

The programme will address the demand and supply side of women’s employment by securing commitments from businesses in identifying employment and entrepreneurship opportunities for women; mobilising women to participate in skills and training courses; and supporting the development of training curricula relevant to aspirations of women and business needs.

IKEA has been sourcing products from India for 28 years, and plans to open 25 stores across the country by 2017.

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