BENGALURU: To help women gram panchayat members hone leadership skills, the state government will conduct a residential training programme to over 49,000 such members from November 16. There are over 6,000 gram panchayats and nearly one lakh members in the state.
Of the members, 49,000 are women. The programme will be held by Abdul Nazir Sab State Institute of Rural Development (ANSSIRD) under the Rural Development and Panchayat Raj (RDPR) Department at various centres across the state. Around 40 members of four to six-gram panchayats will be trained in each centre.
K Lakshmi Priya, Director of ANSSIRD, told The New Indian Express that it is for the first time in the country that such a training programme for women gram panchayat members is being held in the state. A training module has been designed in consultation with various stakeholders, including NGOs.
Training programme at 8 centres on a pilot basis
She said on the first day of the training programme, the members will be taught how to overcome fear. They will be asked to speak openly and there will be activity-based events for them. On the second day, the focus will be on improving their communication skills. The members will be trained in how to communicate effectively, give public speeches and conduct meetings.
“We will also focus on women-centric laws,” she added. On the last day, the members will be trained in leadership traits. The programme will be held in clusters till February next. Interestingly, 15% of the 49,000 members have never gone to school. But they have leadership qualities. The programme is expected to hone their leadership skills, she said.
Deepa N, faculty member, ANSSIRD, said a similar training programme had been held at eight centres on a pilot basis for women panchayat members. During the programme, the women members stated that they never got an opportunity to speak or make decisions independently.
“We focus on personality development and team building. There will be lengthy lecture sessions and activity-based events,” she added. Deepa said during the training programme, the women members will be asked to write about the changes they would like to bring in their wards and where they would like to see themselves in the next six months. “This will also help them think broadly,” she added.