Why Skill Development?
Skill development is essential for nation-building. It is a huge opportunity, to accelerate growth and improve prosperity in our country. It will enable India to smoothly negotiate the transition to a more urbanised country. Though urbanisation brings with it new employment & livelihood opportunities, but these also require new skill sets. At the same time, skill development in rural areas will enable people to earn sustainable livelihoods in rural India itself, balancing the pressures of urbanisation and enhancing the vibrancy of the rural ecosystem. Skill development will truly enable India to leverage its demographic advantage not just within India, but even capitalising on employment opportunities arising in other countries where the population is ageing. India’s dependency ratio will continue to decline for over two more decades, even as every other major economy including China ages. A WTO study estimated that skill development could improve India’s GDP by 3 percentage points by 2035. It also underscored the importance of increasing the female participation in the work-force.
Learning a skill not only enables a livelihood but also unveils a sense of autonomy in an individual, shapes their identity at a community level, includes them financially and empowers them socially. It is with these perspectives that the foundation sets out strategy for skill development and eventual social empowerment.
Financial inclusion is viewed as a crucial part of the national development vision especially for rural development, following a profound approach in achieving the same is equally important. Where the foundation selects skills based on macro and micro level needs of a particular demography assessing the local ecosystem, ICICI bank provides enterprise-focused credit rather than consumption based credit which ensures the sustainability of the model. ICICI Bank and Foundation together brings banking to the unbanked sectors of the country, aiming at social empowerment holistically.