Local Government Division (LGD), FCDO and UNDP have jointly started a specially designed training programme targeting around 21,000 young girls and women to build their skills on micro-enterprise development.
The trio will also help the segment of populations adapt with the fast-changing employment landscape against the backdrop of a large-scale job loss following the Covid-19 pandemic.The Bangladesh government’s one of the flagship initiatives Livelihoods Improvement of Urban Poor Communities Project (LIUPCP) with financial and technical assistance from the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has been implementing the training programme titled “Handling the Post Covid Challenges in Micro-Enterprise Management” in collaboration with the Institute for Inclusive Finance and Development (InM).
The LIUPC project has contributed to stimulate and revitalise the local urban economy by supporting the poor, especially the young girls and women living in slums and low-income communities, by providing employable skills and business start-up grants for self or wage employment, said a press release. It has also contributed to improve inclusive livelihoods through socio-economic funds being distributed to young girls and boys as well as women through a systematic data-driven and participatory selection process followed by a digital banking transfer.
This training will give the participants a valuable insight into the most contemporary issues of enterprise promotion initially for the expert staff trainers who will cascade the training to more than 800 community facilitators and 20,000 beneficiaries at the ground across 20 city corporations and municipalities in phases.
Addressing an online inaugural ceremony of the training programme on Tuesday, UNDP Bangladesh Resident Representative Sudipto Mukerjee said it is often a challenge for the poor women to decide on what to do with grant money for sustainable economic recovery.
“I believe this exclusively designed training programme will make that investment effective by generating more employable skills, gainful employment and a modest income for those poor families.” John Warburton, Team Leader of Extreme Poverty, Resilience and Climate Change, and Senior Environment Adviser of Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) at British High Commission in Dhaka, said the impact of Covid-19 on urban poverty has been enormous as the number of poor people has almost tripled in the 20 project cities from 2 million in 2019 to more than 6 million which means more than 4 million people have emerged as the “new poor” due to the adverse of impact of pandemic.
Women are disproportionately affected because of job and income loss and business shutdowns. Special efforts, therefore, need to be put in place to support women entrepreneurs, he said.