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Women Technology Parks: 10,000+ Indian Rural Women Benefitted in the Last Five Years

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Women Technology Parks, a technology modulation and a training center to show case livelihood technologies for women, has reinvented itself in the last five years and have trained more than 10,000 women in the rural areas of our country. It was in the year 2011, the Department of Science & Technology SEED Division (Science for Equity, Empowerment & Development) awarded a grant to TIDE to setup a 'Women's Technology Park' (WTP) in Karnataka.

WTPs are established in rural and peri-urban areas as technology modulation, adaptation and training Centers for women groups mainly from farming community. They promote development and adaptation of appropriate technologies, transfer proven technologies and demonstration of live technology models to improve the weakest link of the predominant livelihood system of women in an area and promote social entrepreneurship and women employment based on the strongest link of the livelihood system.

They create an environment, where scientists and technologists from mentoring organizations could provide knowledge and appropriate technology for adoption and practice by women groups at their own farm or workplace.

In Andhra Pradesh, a WTP has trained around 350 rural women to develop products ranging from herbal to food and cosmetics. Dr A Jyothi, a retired Professor from Sri Padmavati Mahila Visvavidyalam, Tirupati who was part of the WTP team elaborated on how the team conducted door-to-door survey to find out enterprising rural women and also school and college going girls in the various districts of the state who could be trained to improve their knowledge, skills and earn more using science and technology.

Some of the innovative technologies that women have been trained are operating shredder machine and usage of selective e-waste parts for remanufacturing, CNC hotwire cutter, vacuum-drying flowers and 3D chocolate printing machine.

“We have developed 30 products which include food items and cosmetics and trained women through exhibition-cum-training program. Most of them are doing well and earning by making and selling various products,” said Dr A. Jyothi.

Some of the innovative technologies that women have been trained are operating shredder machine and usage of selective e-waste parts for remanufacturing, CNC hotwire cutter, vacuum-drying flowers and 3D chocolate printing machine.

Also knowledge and training are being provided in processing perishable raw materials like crop, fruit and vegetable, milk, meat, egg, and fish into marketable value added products like virgin coconut oil, natural coconut vinegar, coir mat, herbal cosmetics, fruit and vegetable preserves clean milk, mozzarella cheese, milk beverages, meat and fish snacks, etc. at small scale. Such technology-based value addition not only increases the income from the sale but also enhances the shelf-life and functionality of the products.

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