From victims to successful entrepreneurs: Story of Kaluru women

A trail of destruction was left by flash floods and landslides in August 2018 in Kaluru. Kaluru is a village in Kodagu district. People lost all means of livelihood as the villagers were agriculturalists. There are farmlands buried under debris. 

The families felt helpless. Everything was lost in the blink of an eye. The women took a decision of never losing hope and turned their lives around. Because of their hard work and passion, they earned the title of ‘Kaluru women’. They are now earning their livelihood themselves. 

The credit goes to a rehabilitation initiative by the name of Project Coorg. The trust organized various skill development programmes for the women. Women were learning skills in tailoring and food processing. Women were also trained in manufacturing chips, rice flour, chocolates, pickles and many other food items. 

Many partners and sponsors came to support this initiative. Another initiative was launched by the name of ‘Yashaswi’. Through this women were taught soft skills and business know-how. With the joint efforts, the women soon became entrepreneurs. 

Women who have low eye sight opt for food processing. They make many kinds of masala powders, grind rice flours and make chocolates. When there is an increase in sales, they are also paid incentives along with their regular salaries. 

An eatery is also set up. There women sell the food products made by them. It is often visited by tourists and locals. Once victims, they are now successful entrepreneurs. They have become an inspiration for many people. The initiative started by Project Coorg has transformed into a women empowerment programme and is continuing to change lives for the better.