In a quiet, leafy street in Sadanandnagar, Bangalore, a white building rises majestically, towering above the surrounding houses. This is the “IIM of the poor” as Ramesh Swamy, Lead Trustee of SGBS Trust fondly refers to it. The ‘Unnati Centre’, an initiative of the Trust, has been a fountainhead of hope for the underprivileged youth from across the country. They come here with many dreams and aspirations of a bright future, but are not yet sure how it is all going to be possible in just fifty days when they are to walk out confidently with a job in hand.
This is the story of how Unnati has helped over 10,000 young men and women 'Learn. Earn and Stand Tall'. The Unnati course is a 50-day training course in the core vocations along with Spoken English, Basic Computer Skills, and Values. The Unnati program runs 7 batches in a year imparting 300 hours of training for every 50 days. Students are all youth in the age group of 18 to 25 comprising of both boys and girls, who are mainly from the underprivileged, rural, urban, semi-literate and non-literate backgrounds.
Training for life– and for livelihood
At Unnati the youth are taught to fish rather than being handed over a fish. Unnati offers training in six vocations: Admin Assistant, Retail Sales & Marketing, Guest Care, and Beautician, Bedside attendant and Driving for women (conditions apply). The eligibility criteria being only 18 years of age and a willingness to learn and grow. They could be school dropouts or those that might have not even seen the shelter of a school. Unnati takes complete responsibility to mould them, gainfully employ them and thereby help them lead a life of dignity.