India has shifted from the notion of “Women’s Development” to “Women-Led Development” in recent years. The shift reflects a change in mindset from seeing women as passive recipients of development programs to active participants and leaders in the development process. Recognizing the important role that women can play in driving sustainable and equitable development, the notion of women-led development emphasizes the achievement of women with equal opportunities, decision-making power, and control over resources.
The Indian government has taken several initiatives to promote women’s leadership and empowerment, and achieve SDG 5 such as the following initiatives:
Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan provides free antenatal care to pregnant women, particularly those from marginalized communities.
Sakhi Centres provide counseling, legal aid, and support services to women affected by violence.
Women SHG (Self-Help Group) Movement promotes women’s economic empowerment by providing them access to credit, training, and marketing support.
Indira Gandhi Matritva Sahyog Yojana provides financial assistance to pregnant and lactating women to encourage them to seek proper nutrition and healthcare.
National Scheme for Adolescent Girls provides nutritional, health, and educational support to adolescent girls in rural areas.
National Health Mission improves the overall health and well-being of women and children, particularly those from marginalized communities.
National Commission for Women is an independent body that works to safeguard the rights and interests of women in India.
Women in Security Force (WISF) Scheme increases the representation of women in security forces and promote their participation in law enforcement activities.
These initiatives focus on improving the status of the girl child and promoting gender equality. The government introduced policies to increase the representation of women in decision-making bodies, such as local councils and legislative assemblies.
The shift from “Women’s Development” to “Women-Led Development” represents a significant step forward in promoting gender equality and empowering women in India. Nongovernmental organizations, such as the S M Sehgal Foundation, play a significant role in promoting women-led development. These organizations have implemented programs that aim to empower women and provide them with the skills and knowledge needed to become leaders in their communities.
The initiatives reflect the government’s efforts to address multiple challenges faced by women in India and promote their participation and empowerment across all spheres of life.
S M Sehgal Foundation & Its Contributions Toward Achieving SDG 5
Established in 1999, S M Sehgal Foundation is a sustainable rural development NGO in India that advocates for sustainable rural development with a focus on promoting human dignity, protecting the environment, and advocating for social justice. The foundation collaborates with rural communities in India to build their capacities and help them achieve self-reliance.
The foundation’s programs address various issues, including Agricultural Development, Water Management, Rural Education in India, Women’s Empowerment, and more. S M Sehgal Foundation promotes sustainable and equitable development, and its work has significantly improved the lives of countless individuals in rural communities.
Women’s Leadership in India’s Development Sector
S M Sehgal Foundation promotes women’s leadership in India’s development sector. The foundation recognizes and honors the important role that women play in driving sustainable and equitable development and empowers women to become leaders in their communities.
The foundation has implemented several programs to promote women’s leadership, such as the Women’s Leadership Program, which provides training and support to women leaders in rural communities. The program focuses on building the leadership skills of women and empowering them to become agents of change in their communities.
S M Sehgal Foundation work is contributing to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 5 (SDG 5) of promoting gender equality. The foundation’s programs help to increase the representation of women in decision-making roles and empowering women to take an active role in driving development in their communities.
S M Sehgal Foundation’s efforts to promote women’s leadership in India’s development sector create a more equitable and sustainable future. By empowering women to become leaders in their communities, the foundation is helping to promote gender equality and drive positive change in India.
S M Sehgal Foundation highlights the importance of corporate social responsibility (CSR) in empowering women in India. The CSR report asserts that gender equality is essential for sustainable development, and companies have a crucial role in promoting it through their CSR initiatives.
The report provides several examples of successful CSR initiatives that have empowered women, including providing skill training and job opportunities for women, creating safe working environments, and promoting women’s leadership and decision-making roles. The report highlights the need for collaboration between companies, civil society organizations, and the government to create a supportive ecosystem for women’s empowerment.
The report emphasizes that companies need to prioritize gender equality in their CSR initiatives to ensure that women benefit from them. Companies should focus on empowering women from marginalized communities and creating a gender-inclusive workplace culture. The report recommends that companies establish mechanisms to measure the impact of their initiatives on women’s empowerment.
By prioritizing women’s empowerment, companies will benefit women and contribute to sustainable development and a more equitable future for India.