ASHI, Haryana is aware that empowerment of women is key to the development of social health of society. Therefore, with effect from 2007, Project Navchetna was launched. It involved providing skills to ladies from nearby colonies inhabited by people from economically weaker sections. Training was provided on cutting and stitching, knitting, candle making, beauty culture, ‘mehandi’ art and also on cooking and baking. ENACTUS, a volunteer organisation formed by students from various colleges of Chandigarh, came forward to sell the products made by ladies of Navchetna. Training was based on the concept of ‘earn while you learn’. Ladies were provided remuneration for the items produced by them. These items were thereafter sold to recoup the cost of material and remuneration provided to the ladies.
Every year, many needy girls and women join Navchetna center to learn new skills in tailoring, beauty culture, candle making, knitting and other allied crafts. This programme has been successful in boosting their confidence and giving them a sense of self-worth which is the greatest asset of any human being to lead a life of respect and dignity.
In addition, monetary incentives are provided to these women by giving them honorarium in return for the products developed by them. The honorarium is provided from the profits earned from sale of the products developed by these women. In fact ‘Learn and Earn is the basic credo of this programme. No part of profit is retained by ASHI, Haryana. Complete profit is distributed among the women based on efforts put in by them. Apart from boosting their self-esteem this enables them to supplement their household income. At present 55 ladies are enrolled with Navchetna.