Jharkhand start-up to empower elderly, provide them sustainable income with zero worries

‘Swanirbhar’ is an initiative to provide elderly people a unique opportunity to earn livelihoods with pride, dignity, and self-respect.
For representational purpose only
For representational purpose only

RANCHI: In a first-of-its-kind initiative, Aapkilathi Technologies Private Limited, a start-up company by a group of youths in Ranchi, will empower the elderly people by making them financially independent through skill development and providing them a platform to sell their products through the platform ‘Swanirbhar’. 

According to the founder of the start-up company, Binay Jha, ‘Swanirbhar’ is an initiative to bridge the digital divide and provide a platform that not only celebrates the elders and their skills but also provided them a unique opportunity to earn livelihoods with pride, dignity, and self-respect.

Jha said that they are working with a simple objective of providing sustainable income with zero worries to the elderly. No other platform celebrates elders the way Swanirbhar does, as it is the world’s first digital AI-enabled platform dedicated to the empowerment of the elderly, he said.

“It is an effort to empower elderly people with a basic theme to provide them sustained monthly income when another source of resources has actually come to an end. Under this scheme, we will try to identify the hidden talents or skills in the elderly person who have been doing that in a limited way or just for self-consumption,” said Jha. ‘Swanirbhar’ will give them a platform under which their products will be pushed before the world with proper branding marketing, he added.

Jha further added that branding of the products by the elderly, who have the capacity to make something, will be listed on this platform and showcased before the world. Besides, everything, right from packaging to courier will be made available by ‘Aapkilathi,’ he said.

“The objective is to hone the capabilities of every elderly person who has the capacity to become an entrepreneur. If they already have a skill, they will be promoted through this platform highlighting the uniqueness of the product made by them representing the local Indian culture,” said Jha. It will also help in conserving the local culture which, due to negligence, is becoming extinct these days, he added.

Jha said that it would require a smartphone, a bit of awareness so that they could also create a brand for their products and get a sustained monthly income and become an ‘elderpreneur’. To make it possible, proper training will be provided to the selected persons, he said.

“Those who do not have any skill, we are identifying them calling them ‘Aapkilathi’ heroes and make an investment on them after assessing them properly. We are also providing finances to such people through microfinance and skill development so that they could also take advantage of this platform and earn a sustained monthly income making them financially independent,” said Jha. All the backend logistics support will be provided by Aapkilathi, he added.

For this, a portal is being developed, all the marketing and branding will be done by Aapkilathi.com. It will be a typical e-commerce platform but one of its kind which and the only qualifying criteria to join it is that they should have attained the age of 60.

In addition to that, they also launching a platform called 'Cares 360' under which elderly people will be offered – active health ageing, 24X7 responsive care, health, and mental wellness and personalized companionship. Another platform is HUM-TUM, for encouraging the elders to communicate, socialize and engage with one another. HUM-TUM also shares exclusive features like the wellness centre, food for the soul, and speak-easy, where elders can talk about important issues and share their testimonies and stories.

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The New Indian Express