Usha Sponsors the Bansdroni Nabarun Club Football Tournament

Usha Sponsors the Bansdroni Nabarun Club Football Tournament in Kolkata as an initiative to promote grass-root level talent in the country

DSC_0272Usha has been actively involved in uplifting grass root level talent in India. While, Usha has strategically partnered with the FC Goa team of Indian Super League 2014, the company is also sponsoring local football clubs. On December 13- 2014, the final match of Bansdroni Nabarun Club Football Tournament was played at the Usha’s factory ground in Kolkata. Although it was a DSC_0157grass root level tournament, yet it saw participation of 16 teams from the city and all players were decked up in their respective team jerseys.

There was a lot of zeal and enthusiasm on the ground, packed with audience from different age groups. Every goal would generate high decibel sound and impromptu dance and rolling over ground to display mad happiness. Finally Sardar Para Sanghatan Samity team emerged as winners. Eminent dancer Tanushree Shankar’s group, performed on the occasion as a part of the inaugural ceremony.Mr. John of Winning Team receiving the Highest Goal Scorer Prize from Mr. Rajesh Tara, VP-HR

Mr. Sukumar Samajpati, renowned former footballer handed over the winner’s trophy along with Mr. Rajesh Tara, VP-HR, Usha International and Mr. Sandeep Mehrotra, AVP and Unit Head, Usha Kolkata Factory.  Other eminent personalities namely, Mr. Gopal Roy, Councillor and Mr. Alvito D’Cunha, renowned footballer currently with East Bengal team and former member of Indian team also marked their presence at the prize distribution ceremony.

Usha Silai Schools: Creating Opportunities in North East India

1NagalandBackground and Context: UIL has been successfully running the Silai School program in Nagaland since the year 2013. This case study is an attempt to record how the 10 Women Entrepreneurs from the 10 Silai Schools in Dimapur have successfully joined hands to start a Showroom Cum Sales Centre by mobilising support from the Nagaland State Social Welfare Board in Dimapur.

Presently, UIL is running 20 Silai Schools in the state. All the Silai Schools are in the districts of Kohima and Dimapur

The state is inhabited by 16 major tribes and a large number of smaller tribes. Each tribe is unique in character with its own distinct customs, language and dress

2nagaland(II) Main trends of Silai Schools in Nagaland

  1. Silai Schools have helped the economies of these 20 Silai School women entrepreneurs
  2. A positive enthusiasm is visible in the communities where the Silai Schools are operational
  3. Even the local district administration is aware and positive about the Silai Schools

Dimapur, which is the main commercial centre of Nagaland has 10 Silai Schools in the neighbouring villages (the other 10 being Kohima). For the State of Nagaland, MSS had conducted the Silai School training through the Training of Trainers (TOT) model, where 2 master trainers from the state were trained by UIL in Guwahati for a period of 7 days. One of the Master Trainers from Nagaland was an enthusiastic lady named Ms Thine Sekhose.

Thine, very successfully trained 10 women in Nagaland after having motivated them to start Silai Schools in the villages. In addition to being the Master Trainer, coach and mentor for these 10 village women, Thine is also the program coordinator for the local NGO called EDITI, which is monitoring the Silai Schools on a regular basis.

4nagaland(III) Spin-off effects of Silai Schools in Dimapur

One of the main problems that the Silai School teachers face is that once the number of learners have stabilised or if the teachers have completed the target of teaching 20 learners, they are enthused to do “something else” or “something big”. In Dimapur, the teachers wanted to sell their finished products and wanted to make a successful business out of it. However, since the Silai Schools are located in remote villages, not many people used to know or buy the finished products. Hence the number of customers was limited.

Gradually, the teachers, under the leadership of Thine Sekhose, planned to walk an extra mile to augment their income. They approached the Nagaland Social Welfare Department and appraised them about the Silai Schools and requested them for assistance to start a Showroom and Sales Centre in Dimapur. The Silai School teachers, planned that all the quality finished products that they create in the Silai Schools would be displayed and sold from the Showroom.

Happily, for the 10 women and Thine, the Nagaland Social Welfare Department  approved the proposal and agreed to support them by paying the monthly rent of about Rs 6000/- . Moreover they agreed to support the furniture and fixtures for the Showroom and a computer for their day to day work.

Therefore, the Showroom and Sales Centre, named as “Emergence” by Thine and her band of 10 Silai School Teachers came into operation on September 2014 at PWD Road, Midland, Dimapur.

6nagaland(IV) The Business Model of the Showroom and Sales Centre:

  1. The 10 Silai School women contribute to the centre, whatever products they make in the Silai Schools in the villages
  2. The finished products range from skirt-tops, soft toys, mobile pouches.
  3. The Silai School teachers have to contribute 5-10% of the profit for the maintenance and management of the centre
  4. Ms Thine has also started training centre on Sewing and dress making, soft-toy making and artificial flower-making centre. Traditional Bridal dress for wedding is also an especial item.
  5. Many people visiting Dimapur request for customised items and these orders are then completed at the Silai Schools by the teachers.
  6. The Centre has been named as “Emergence” by Thine and her band of 10 Silai School Teachers.
  7. This  EMERGENCE is evolving as a backward linkages initiative for the Silai School Products

The program has just started two months. There is an enthusiasm amongst Thine and her team. So far the response from buyers have been positive. Silai Schools are paving way for many opportunities for rural women.

Usha launches Silai Schools Programme in Bhutan

Usha International launches Silai School Programme in Bhutan in association with Tarayana Foundation

DSC_0128Usha International ltd announced the launch of the Usha Silai School Programme in Bhutan in association with Tarayana Foundation, a nonprofit organization working towards improving the quality of the lives of vulnerable individuals and communities in Bhutan. After 4400 silai schools in India and 100 in Nepal this programme is now being launched in Bhutan to empower village level women. For more information please visit http://www.ushainitiatives.com.

DSC_0148As a part of the 10 day silai school training program which starts today, twenty women have been selected from three districts of Bhutan on the basis of assessment guidelines shared by Usha. These women are being trained on advanced sewing techniques to become ‘Master Trainers’.

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These trainers will thereafter not only provide sewing services in their own villages but will also train other women as an income generating activity. Usha will provide all the machines and materials required, while Tarayana Foundation will provide logistic support and coordination during the training period. Tarayana Foundation would also be setting up 3 production centres called “Tarayana-Usha Sewing Schools” in three districts of Bhutan, namely – Thimphu, Trongsa and Mongar.

Usha Silai School Program is a unique community initiative, where Usha International helps women from remote rural areas earn a better livelihood, by providing them with the necessary skill sets required in sewing, stitching and machine repair.

Saina Nehwal Goes Golfing

2Ms. Saina Nehwal, Brand Ambassador of Usha International tried her hands on golf at the 5th Usha DGC Ladies Open Amateur Championship. She later said, that it was fun playing the game but it’s a difficult sport.1

Thereafter, Ms. Saina Nehwal along with Ms. Chhaya Shriram, Director Usha International Ltd., felicitated winners of the tournament. 17 year old, Ms. Tvesa Malik grabbed the Usha fifth Delhi Golf Club Ladies Open Amateur title. This championship is one of the leading ladies golf tournaments on the Indian Golf Union Circuit. 1aSaina Nehwal also spoke on her association with Usha and how the company has been consistently promoting sports across all levels. She said that it was great to see many young girls taking to golf and emphasized on the fact that more and more girls should be participating in sports. At the end, Saina Nehwal was presented with a memento by Krishna Shriram, Chairman Usha International Ltd. 1b

Priyanka Chopra at USHA Play

Priyanka Chopra at USHA Play

Priyanka Chopra at USHA Play

If one were to ask what is common between Priyanka Chopra, Mary Kom and Usha, it would be Sports: The spirit that connects people and inspires them to achieve higher things. No wonder while speaking at the recent Usha Play event she stated that after Mary Kom she has developed a new-found respect for sportspersons.

Usha Play provided a platform to acknowledge sportspersons and a chance to celebrate the success of the movie Mary Kom. It was gateway to a world of sports, other than cricket, where the gorgeous actress felicitated sportspersons from various Usha Initiatives spanning across the fields of Golf, Marathon and Flying Discs.

Usha Chairman Krishna Shriram takes the stage and Plays the Piano

Usha Chairman Krishna Shriram takes the stage and Plays the Piano

The theme of the event ‘Play’ was set even before Priyanka stepped in, with Usha Executive Chairman Mr. Krishna Shriram taking the stage and later playing the Piano immaculately!  The rest of the evening unfolded keeping this tune of Play on a high octave. To put to words the mood of the event in the very words of Mr. Krishna Shriram “We borrow both creativity and energy from sportspersons around us.” He went on to state that as a company Usha supports sports and the idea of ‘Play’ because it is more than just business, as sports connects and inspires.

Priyanka Chopra felicitates various Sporrtsperson

Priyanka Chopra felicitates various Sportspersons

This enthusiasm was shared by Priyanka herself, who once was an avid Frisbee player, as introduced by Mr. Rajesh Tara. The felicitation ceremony began with Priyanka handing the Usha Play Trophy to Amateur Golfer Gauri Monga, followed by Arjuna Awardee Marathon runner Asha Aggarwal.  The Mumbai Frisbee team came next. Both the sportspersons and the team have been part of various Usha Sporting Initiatives.

Priyanka Chopra hailed the power of sports at Usha Play

Priyanka Chopra hailed the power of sports at Usha Play

Speaking on the occasion Priyanka hailed the work done by Indian sportspersons, their inspiration and discipline and the power of sports to transform people, which she recently underwent after her Mary Kom stint. According to her the transformation was not just physical but was also spiritual! She further stated “With the abundance of sporting talent in the country not only girls but all sportspersons need to be supported and encouraged to achieve their best.”

Director Chhaya Shriram handing Priyanka a Habadersery Basket

Director Chhaya Shriram gifts Priyanka a Haberdashery Basket

Later, Director Chhaya Shriram gifted her a wonderful haberdashery basket and an Usha Janome Dream Maker Sewing Machine. Expressing her delight Priyanka said she simply adores both the gifts and her mother would love them too!

Priyanka felicitates various USHA performers

Priyanka felicitates USHA performers

She went on to felicitate three Usha Dealers – Mr. Subhash M. Rathore, Mr. Vimal Jain and Mr. Bharat Dharamshi – for their outstanding performance. And also shared the stage with various TISVA Distributors.

Priyanka Chopra with various TISVA Distributors.

Priyanka Chopra with TISVA Distributors.

To know more visit: www.ushainitiatives.com

Whom did Priyanka Felicitate?

Priyanka Chopra Felicitates USHA Silai School WomenRecently the gorgeous Priyanka Chopra felicitated two USHA Silia School Women at The HAB by Usha, under the Usha Initiatives programme. We all do know who Priyanka is, but what about the two women – Kamar Shaheen and Ms Shivnanada Nagnathrao Kothurwad – she acknowledged for their will towards self-independence? This is their story…

Ms Shivnanada Nagnathrao Kothurwad story could be termed as ‘noir’ if this was fiction, but since truth is stranger than fiction ‘tragic’ is the appropriate word. But the real message of the story is about ‘one’s will to rise above the dire circumstances that fate hands out to us.’ Like a twisted fairy tale it begins with a wedding: She believed that her marriage arranged by her parents would pave the way for her happiness and prosperity in future. But little did Shivnananda or her parents know that she was marrying a person who though professionally a local school teacher, also had a criminal record under section 306 of the Indian Penal Code.

Ms Shivnanada Nagnathrao Kothurwad

Ms Shivnanada Nagnathrao Kothurwad

Thus all hell broke loose in the life of Shivnanda after the marriage. The criminal in the husband began to show his real face with time. Incidences of domestic violence started increasing as time passed with the husband subjecting her to assault and battery for small reasons. There were even three attempts when her husband tried to murder her! Shivnanda had no choice but to run away from the criminal of a husband. She moved to her parents’ home (only as a paying guest) with her 2 young children to Sultanpur village in Nanded district of Maharashtra.

She resolved not to give up and wanted to be economically independent for her children and herself. Her husband had refused any financial support to the children or her. The USHA Silai School initiative came at the most appropriate opportunity for her. She started informing the community about the Silai Schools and gradually due to her expertise she gained popularity through word of mouth and over a period of 1 year she has taught more than 20 learners charging a minimum of Rs 150/- per month. Moreover her job work in the Silai Schools helps her to earn an approximate of Rs 100-150/- per day. Today her income has increased to Rs 6000-7000/- a month. In her own words, Shivnananda puts in, “the income from the Silai School has helped me to send my children to schools and I would like to thank Usha for giving me this opportunity”

The Silai School at Sultanpur village has helped an enterprising woman like Shivnanda come out of the clutches of poverty.  By refusing to go back to her criminal husband she has protected her own life and USHA Silai School has helped her sustain an independent and honorable life.

Creations by Shivnanada

Creations by Shivnanada

Unlike Shivnanada, Kamar Shaheen’s story lacks the darker shades of human nature, however it is one again of abject poverty and the will to rise above it. She is from an interior village called Bilora in Amravati district of Maharashtra. Daughter of a fruit seller and housewife, Shaheen and her family spent her childhood in acute poverty. However, her parents ensured that Shaheen attended the local village school to complete her Class XIIth.

Untitled-1 copyDuring her schooldays, she developed a penchant for sewing and stitching from her mother. This preliminary skill learnt from her mother and her determination to come out of economic hardships made her one of the best potential candidates for starting the Usha Silai School in her village. When the Usha’s local NGO partner contacted her, she was enthusiastic about the programme. With a resolve to succeed in this endeavor, Shaheen started her own Usha Silai School in Feb 2012 after being trained.

Gradually, the Silai School gained momentum and girls from near and far started attending her Silai School. Today, there are about 20 learners enrolled in her Silai School. Her income now is approximately Rs 5000/- per month. During festive seasons of Ramzan and marriage seasons her earnings go up to a minimum Rs 250 to 300/- per day from the job work she gets. Usha Silai Schools have helped her achieve her dream of economic independence.

To Know More Visit: www.ushainitiatives.com

Priyanka’s Day Out With USHA

Priyanka Chopra with USHA Director Chayya Shriram

Priyanka Chopra with USHA Director Chhaya Shriram

There is something lacking in the word ‘Marvelous’ to describe Priynaka Chopra, because she is so much more than that. Priyanka recently visited The HAB by USHA at Mumbai and charmed everyone. Beginning with her sewing to punching skills, she added even more charm to the beautiful interiors of The HAB.

Priyanka Chopra on the USHA JANOME Seiwng Machine

Priyanka Chopra on the USHA JANOME Seiwng Machine

A little experienced in sewing she claimed, growing up their first family sewing machine was an Usha one. She also showed off a few punches wearing designer gloves made on Usha Janome Sewing machine. Following which she stitched for herself a hand band with ease on the same machine. Later she was gifted a stitched portrait of herself masterfully crafted on the USHA Janome Memory Craft – a machine as marvelous as Priyanka, which is capable of creating any design the user wishes, against all odds! Walking around The HAB she amused all, with her antics of carrying a Duffle-Bag and trying on a skirt, all of which were crafted at The HAB.

Priyanka Chopra being gifted with with the sewn portrait

Priyanka Chopra being gifted with the sewn portrait

She went on to show us some real punches on an Usha Punching Bag along with Usha Director Chhaya Shriram. Following which she felicitated two Usha Silai School women for their achievements and never-say-die attitude. Speaking on the occasion, she appreciated and applauded the work done by Usha Initiatives through its over 4000 USHA Silai Schools spread across the country that have empowered women in rural areas. Connecting the dots she further added that one of the primary themes of the movie Mary Kom is women empowerment, which Usha has managed to accomplish in real life all across the country. She ended with thanking USHA, saying that without the brand’s contribution the movie Mary Kom wouldn’t have been possible.Priyanka Chopra Felicitates USHA Silai School Women

She was later spotted at the TISVA store – a Designer Lighting Store perched above The HAB. Where among glamorous chandeliers and sleek contemporary lights she lit a traditional Indian Diya accompanied by Mr. Krishna Shriram.

Priyanka Chopra at TISVA

Priyanka Chopra at TISVA

To Know More Visit: www.ushainitiatives.com       For TISVA Visit: www.lifebytisva.com

Run USHA, Run

Not many of you have heard about the Rath India Open Marathon, which first took place in 1982 coinciding with the 9th Asian Games, but many among you have participated in it! Don’t be surprised, as today it is better known as the Mawana Indian Open Marathon. It is one of the oldest running (pun intended) sports event in the country.

Untitled-1 copyA part of USHA sports Initiatives it has produced leading women athletes like Asha Aggarwal, Sunita Godara, Suman Mehta Rawat, and Rigzen Angmo. Some of them went on to be awarded the coveted Arjuna Awards. Today the Marathon occupies a special place in the sports calendar of AFI.

Keeping this glorious tradition alive, the route of the Marathon makes it a point to run through some of the most magnificent historical landmarks in Delhi. In the past it has been routed through the likes of India Gate, Jantar Mantar, All India Radio and Connaught Place. It also bears the distinction for being the first Marathon to test run the race route proposed for the 2010 Commonwealth Games.   10649672_10154453790550251_9151304437457179253_n

And at the end of it, it is not just another walk (rather run) around the parks of Delhi, for every year the Marathon takes up a noble cause. In the past it has taken up a diverse range of causes from environmental protection to earthquake relief, depending on what the country needs the most.

Will you be running with USHA in the next Marathon?

Mary Kom’s Raging Bulls

Mary Kom Boxing Academy Imphal

Mary Kom Boxing Academy Imphal

The vision of the Boxing Academy set up by Mary Kom states “Quality Boxers with Prestigious Sports Medals from under-privileged potentials”. So far its Boxers have taken part at various state and national level championships and tournaments brining back Gold and Silver.

The Star Boxer after having realized that there is a lot of hidden talent, very like her, living untraceable lives in the interior parts of our country, set up the academy in 2006. These unacknowledged young people, she believes posses skills and enough will-power to bring laurels to the country. And with this motive she goes about inspiring and training our future champions.

No, wonder after speaking at The HAB by Usha she updated her Facebook Status to #UshaIntl Thanks for a great evening. I’m sure our paths will cross again when it comes to empowering women #UshaMpower

Mary Kom Facebook Status

Mary Kom Facebook Status

For just like her USHA INITIATIVES is empowering both women through its various Silai Schools and supporting and sponsoring various sports events – Marathon, Frisbee, Golf and Cricket. The former Silai Schools are an attempt to empower under-privileged women in rural areas of the country. Whereas, the latter sports initiatives do not only encompass urban areas but go on to include rural Frisbee camps for the marginalized.

USHA INITIATIVES

USHA INITIATIVES

In a recent interview the Magnificent Mary said “With women’s boxing becoming an Olympic event, lot more nations will compete in 2016 and the competition will be tough. I hope it helps Indian women boxing as well and there’s a growing awareness about the sport, and we hope to see lot more talent in the country.”

Just as Dingkok Singh’s success in the ring, got Mary into boxing, so has Mary’s success inspired many to enter the ring. Now with the release of the biopic Mary Kom starring Priyanka Chopra, there is hope that many more women will take up boxing against all odds.

Priyanka Chopra as Mary Kom

Priyanka Chopra as Mary Kom