Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS) and TRIFED, India (under Ministry of Tribal Affairs, Govt. of India) hosted the National Launch of Entrepreneurship Skill Development Programme for women entrepreneurs under Van Dhan Yojana scheme for Odisha in presence of Shri Pravir Krishna, IAS, MD, TRIFED and Dr. Achyuta Samanta, Founder, KIIT & KISS.

The project will implement the Pradhan Mantri Dhan Yojana (PMVDY) and its convergence with Entrepreneurship & Skill Development Programme (ESDP) of Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME). The goal is to impart skill development training to an initial target of nearly 10,000 tribal ESDP trainees per quarter, to groom them to become sustainable, independent entrepreneurs.

In fact, PMVDY is a retail marketing-led value addition plan for Minor Forest Produce (MFP), meant for forest-based tribes to optimize the tribal income, locally.

TRIFED will support the Van Dhan Vikas Kendras (VDVK) members by training them on engagement, capacity building, and market linkages for the collection, value addition, packaging & marketing of Minor Forest Produces (MFPs). The programme hopes to transform tribal beneficiaries from workers to successful, aspiring and confident tribal entrepreneurs ready to compete with the best products in the market with feasible business plans.

Shri Krishna and Dr. Samanta interacted with the women entrepreneurs of Rayagada, Sambalpur, Sundargarh and Nuapada in video conferencing and encouraged them to come forward to enhance their skills in business. Officials of TDCCOL, TRIFED, ITDA and KISS also attended the virtual launch.

Expressing his joy on this partnership with KISS as a nodal agency on the project, Shri Krishna remarked, “KISS is a model for how poor tribals can be made into entrepreneurs through proper skill development”