Context: Over half of Mumbai’s population of 20 million people live in slums. Young women living in slums lack marketable skills to enable them to be competitive in the formal workforce.

Organization: Founded in 1995 with the goal of strengthening the capacity of women and youth to promote gender equality and human rights, Akshara works with women and youth from different walks of life (youth in local colleges, young women living in slums) and provides leadership development workshops, a free library, and online courses in women’s studies to empower women at the individual and community level to challenge and prevent gender based violence and discrimination.

Current Grant: With EMpower’s third grant, Akshara will enable girls from slum communities to gain life skills and technical competence to be more competitive in the formal workforce. It will also enable teachers from government schools to receive and impart gender sensitivity training.

Contact: Nandita Gandhi and Nandita Shah
Contact Email: aksharacentre@vsnl.com
Website: http://www.aksharacentre.org/
Year Established: 1995