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					Using ICTs to create opportunities for the marginalized Women & Men : The Private Sector and community working together
Presented By

Chetan Sharma -Founder
Datamation Consultants Pvt. Ltd. & Datamation Foundation
(A Non-Profit Organization)

On Invitation of the

Gender and Development Thematic Group
Social Capital Seminar Series - ICT for Empowerment Community Driven Development Group

&
Info Dev Groups of The World Bank

Tuesday December 18, 2001

Inspiration & Homage

Mrs. Vimla Sharma
(1932 – 1994)

We owe our formation to the vision & inspiration of Mrs. Sharma. Her concerns about life long conditions of the women and rising unemployment in India, helped us formulate our social and business goals. Our resolve of creating large scale employment opportunities for the poor & women further consolidated after her untimely death battling against cancer in 1994.

CAN ICTs REDUCE POVERTY AND UNDER-DEVELOPMENT IN INDIA
• Even though 200 – 300 Million are progressing in India; 700 – 800 Million people are excluded from the growth process
• Current inequalities have their origin in the industrial revolution and have worsened • The World Bank reports even in last 5 years from 1993 to 1998, the share of income of the poorest 10% in the world fell by 25% while that of the richest 10% rose by 8%.

(By Yuri Dikhanov and Michael Ward, 2001)
• Education for all still remains a dream – Over 40 % population is illiterate.

• Even if the Indian economy grows at 5 – 6 % per annum as has been the case over last 2 – 3 years & consequently doubles, sadly the economy cannot bridge disparity and eradicate poverty. • McKinsey reports over 25% unemployment rate in India (full as well as marginal) due to the continuing transformation in the economy & non- competitiveness of the Indian Agriculture and Industry

DAUNTING TASK AHEAD FOR THE SOCIAL ENTREPRENEURS AND FOR THE DEVELOPMENT EXPERTS

ICT Based Occupations/Professions yet have the scope to reduce poverty and under development
Past Success Stories : Cable Operators, Pay Phone Operators

Current ICT Led Business Models
 Diversified IT Service Companies
 Specialized IT Services

SPECIALIZED IT SERVICES
• • • • • • • •
• • • •

•

Call Centres Transaction Processing Transcription Houses Portals/Vortals/Exchange Internet based services Multi-purpose tele-centers GIS Applications Content Aggregation & Consolidation Tele-Medicine Information Services Data Centers On-Line/Off-Line Computer based education On-Line Govt. Services & E-governance

Estimated number of direct beneficiaries in India (employment in the sector) Estimated number of indirect ICT beneficiaries

4.5 – 5 million people over next 5 Years

24 – 26 million people over next 5 Years

ICT SUCCESS STORIES AFFECTING DEPRIVED MASSES
• GYANDOOT – Rural E-Governance project in Dhar (M.P) • UJJAS – Women‟s newsletter and public radio, Gujarat • AGRI-CULTURE/FISHERIES PROJECT – M.S. Swaminathan Foundation, TamilNadu & Pondicherry. • ANDHRA PRADESH HEALTH PROJECT – Supported by World Bank • Vijay Wada, Andhra Pradesh & few other E-Governance projects • Several Pilot Projects on the anvil TARAHAAT, CORDEC, DRISHTEE

THE SUCCESS/FAILUREOF THE INDIAN IT INDUSTRY
• • Indian Software & Services export of over US $ 18 Billion FY (1999-2000) essentially an urban hi-tech syndrome. Software & Services providers have focused mostly on the international markets at the cost of the local Indian market. Indian Software market (local) has not grown in real terms over the past few years. Lopsided manpower planning – too much urban centric recruitment, preference for engineers of all specialties consequently neglecting other disciplines. High billing rates/Unstable work force handling mostly US based development contracts resulting in enormous competition from China, Philippines, Korea, Far-East Lack of marketable software products since focus has always been on rendering contract programming services.

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Mission Statements of Datamation Consultants & Datamation Foundation
• Deliver high quality diversified, responsive, cost effective, ICT services delivered by marginalized & deprived workforce to top notch organizations. • Plough back profits in ICT initiatives to -- help improve the state of people using ICTs -- help create large scale employment opportunities -- help educate marginalized people using innovative online & off-line ICT media.

DATAMATION – A CASE STUDY OF DELIVERING IT SOLUTIONS BASED ON AN INNOVATIVE BUSINESS MODEL
• One of the early starters – in existence for over 14 years. • Pragmatic business model based on low cost infrastructure, networked PC operating environment. • Invests significantly in people not as much in equipment and infrastructure (in proportion). • Operates frugally, kept costs under tight control by stringent project monitoring. • Internal organic growth – No borrowing/funding from any source. • Save on wage costs by the Cost Of Living Index (COLI) hence a highly decentralized, dispersed work model

• Aggressive marketing both in local & international markets • Sustained growth in sales turnover/meteoric growth in sales for the last 3 years. • Equal focus on the Indian & International markets

• Diversified portfolio of services 1) Document Management 2) Scanning & Imaging 3) Data conversion & Data Entry 4) Application Programming 5) E-Services, Setting up of Portals/Vortals/E-Commerce solutions 6) Rastorization, Vectorization & GIS applications

• Customer Relationship Marketing (CRM) Services • Database Marketing • Image Processing • Market Research • Logistics and Fulfillment • Business Advisory Services • Rural ICT initiatives

• Current Manpower strength of 1200 + operators from 28 locations • Bigger city offices service local Indian clients • International projects are serviced from non-metro locations some of which are very small towns consequently net profitability on international projects is significantly higher. • No segment of the Indian & International market has been left untouched.

• Involved & personal client servicing • High quality at competitive pricing • Consequently client retention rate is 90%. • Estimated sales turnover for FY 2001 – 2002 US $ 6 Million • Projected turnover growth US $ 50 million by FY 2004 – 2005 • Projected jobs at Datamation by FY 2004-2005  3000+ • 85% force comprises women & deprived, marginalized people including physically handicapped. • Fully law abiding and statutory compliant.

DATAMATION – AN ENDURING PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN PRIVATE & VOLUNTARY SCTOR
FRAME WORK
• Consistent interface and partnership with select voluntary groups imparting IT education to deprived & marginalized. Communities -- Slum children, dowry victims girls from economically weak background for the creation of sustainable livelihood

OBJECTIVES
•Recruit qualifying candidates from the voluntary groups in whole-time employment at Datamation.Lobby with other private sector companies as well as for providing employment opportunities for the deprived
•Provide technical inputs to help improve quality of IT education.

•Since target students are from very deprived backgrounds, innovative tools are deployed to enhance understanding of IT concepts. •Support curriculum development in local languages.

PARTICIPATING COMMUNITIES & VOLUNTARY GROUPS DELIVERING COMPUTER EDCATION
•Nari Raksha Samiti (A

women’s self-help group imparting it education to needy girls & dowry victims)
•Prayas ( A non-profit

dedicated for juvenile delinquents & slum kids)
•Deepalaya (A non-profit

dedicated for rehabilitation of slum kids )

•Udayan (An orphanage for girls run by socially conscious women in the spirit of a family home)
•Arise & Shine Church International (A registered orphanage).

•Help Care Society (Registered society supporting care of the girl child).

How this works/deliverables ?
• Select jobs within Datamation are set aside for the voluntary groups. • Recruitment from the voluntary groups expected to increate manifold with the increate in sales turnover at Datamation.Support from the Corporates is also being sought. • No discrimination based on economic & social background.

• Post-recruitment , A dedicated group is responsible for the mentoring & training new recruits. • Mentoring includes exposure to professional work environment, basic etiquettes, work ethics, quality standards, quality assurance process, fundamentals of data conversion & document conversion business. • Post-mentoring/training session; new recruits work on live projects. • Ongoing refresher / reinforcement courses are organized on continuing basis.

CHALLENGES
• Deprived background mandated to deliver in a highly competitive industry. • Past legacy very difficult to overcome-requires lot of effort & patience to heal. • Technical perception being low constant refresher programs needed. • Making girls from deprived background work in a professional industry is an awesome task. The social & peer group pressures are very high. • Women employees need constant counseling & mentoring.

• Difficult to sustain women employees in a high pressure IT industry after they get married & have children (only 40% women continue working after the first child). • Assimilation process between haves & have-nots is slow. • Create a friendlier, easier work environment for, new mothers.

DATAMATION DELIVERABLES

• Technical support. • Software tools development & implementation. • Life long career opportunity, websites development & maintenance, facilitation of E-Commerce • Limited financial support

Initiative # 1-B DATAMATION - AN ENDURING PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN PRIVATE & VOLUNTARY ORGANIZATIONS
Framework • Fund raising support for almost all Voluntary Groups/ NGOs in India for the past decade. Objectives • Use cutting edge database driven fund raising drives • Integrated 4 channel deployment for fund raising  Postal System
 Tele-Marketing  Internet  Direct Dialogue

Participating Communities & Voluntary Groups for
Raising Funds From Datamation‟s Services
• • • • • • Help-Age India SOS Children Villages UNICEF Global Cancer Concern Child Relief & You Bombay Leprosy Mission

• Deepalaya • Oxfam • World Children Fund • Green peace • Arpana Trust And hundreds of voluntary groups from India and World wide.

HOW THIS WORKS / DELIVERABLES
• Datamation possesses Asia‟s largest & most authentic Consumer & Business database segmented across categories. (total repository is more than 40 million names) • Strategic inputs for Fund-Raising • Direct Mailing & Response handling support for FundRaising drives. • Donation accounting including issue of receipts, tax exemption certificates. • Outbound tele-calling for fund-raising • Internet based campaigns to raise funds • Design of Donor gets friend programs • Implementation of Dialogue program

DATAMATION FOUNDATION: BOARD OF TRUSTEES
An international think-tank on ICTs and poverty alleviation, gender and employment generation has been set up to actively implement few projects that would change the lives of the women & marginalized. Top-notch IT & Development experts have been nominated to the Board of Trustees. There are :
• • • • • • • • • Dr. (Ms) Janice Zarro Brodman Dr. (Ms) Nalini Abraham Mrs. Sarita Sharma Dr. Mark Warshauer Mr. D. K. Aggarwal Mr. Akhtar Badshah Mr. Dinesh Nambiar Mr. K.C.Sreenath Mr. Chetan Sharma

DATAMATION FOUNDATION (A CHARITABLE TRUST CURRENTLY UNDER REGISTRATION)
Datamation Foundation has been set up to design & implement innovative ICT project targeted towards women & marginalized communities. Gender and poverty alleviation/employment generation are key goals of the trust.

Datamation Consultants

Datamation Foundation

Gets from Foundation
Cutting edge Innovative best ICT practices worldwide/knowledge base Organizational Goals

Gets from Datamation Consultants

Financial Support

Volunteers

Technical, Admin & Logistical Support Active participation of voluntary groups Business Strategy

& Roadmap

DATAMATION FOUNDATION: ACTIVE PARTICIPANT OF THE SAVE THE GIRL CHILD COMPAIGN
• India facing worst ever “ Gender ” crisis in its history. • There are only 945-947 females per 1000 males per recent census published by the Govt. Of India. • In 126 districts of the country ; the percentage of female is even less than the national average and even lower than the pre-independence numbers. • Medical community & local police authorities/administration are active abetters/participants in this crime.

Initiative # 2

INTERVENTION
Datamation chose not to be a silent spectator to this „ Genocide „ . We have played a leadership role in the “ Save the Girl Child “ campaign.

Our Interventions are:
• Web site dedicated for female foeticide. www.indiafemalefoeticide.org has been launched voluntarily site has:

• Complaint lodging process against the medical community & citizens indulging in this crime. • Hyper-linking the indiafemalefoeticide.org site to other relevant sites world-wide. Emphasis is to link site with other human rights, violence against women & female job opportunity sites. • Dissemination of the complaints to regional authorities for tracking complaints. • Net based pledge & support enlistment from the community in favour of stopping the female foeticides.

• Mass-scale email broadcasts ( Over 6 million homes & medical professionals , bureaucrats, law makers have been covered to far). • Developing & implementing ICT based pilots for the field work, counseling & capacity building of the self-help group[ (SHGs), volunteers & counselors. • Integration of ICTs in the overall communication & awareness campaign. • Web-casting of films on female foeticide & dissemination from the site.

Partners:
• Ministry of Health & Female Welfare , Govt. Of India • Plan International • UNICEF • UNIFIEM • Population Council of India • JICA • BBC World Wide • UNFPA • CEDPA • Nari Raksha Samiti • Nanhi Kali • And a large number of women‟s group • Activist women volunteers

FUTURE GOALS & TARGETS
• Strengthen intervention in the most affected states of the country • Consolidate the consortium & relationships with all concerned partners to stop by implementing innovative ICT strategies.

Initiative # 3 DATAMATION FOUNDATION: INITIATOR OF AN ICT BASED BRIJ REGION‟S WIDOW UPLIFTMENT PROGRAM
CHALLENGE

• Over 33 million widows in India –10% of the overall female population • Every 4th household has a widow, 50% of the widows are over 50 years old • After husband‟s death, only 3% widows shared the same health. • Over 6500 widows live in Brij Pradesh comprising Brindavan, Mathura and other religious place

• Religious institutions mandated to take care of the widows have become defunct & impassive to the plight of the widows • Local administration in collusion with the police loots donations in kind as well as large number of sexual abuse cases have been reported. • A large number of young widows are exploited into prostitution • Older ones live life worst than that of animals getting meager 200 gms. of pulses & rice every day & that too at the whim & fancy of the religious trusts for religious singing • Nobody has a clue about their number, age & current state • Ongoing need, hence charity/donation based model is unsustainable

INTERVENTION
• Providing photo ID Cards to the widows • Setting up of a database containing widow‟s history, current contact details • Sharing the database with the local administration & police • Database/Photo Id Cards project have the support of local religious trusts/Govt. agencies • Launch of few emergency relief programs • Delivery of snack packets to the widows • Setting up of tea vending machines (on the anvil) • Distribution of woolen blankets.

• Get food companies to install „Made to deliver food kiosks „ which the widows can access for a nominal cost • Local counseling,help to be offered by the foundation staff • Issue Multi-purpose smart cards to the widows to enable withdrawal of money from ATMs, food from vending machines

PARTNERS
Guild for service Mathura District administration Key Local Religious Trusts Lancer Food Products Nestle ( Tentative )Delivery of Tea Vending Machines and few food products • Unilever (Tentative )Delivery of Tea Vending Machines and few food & personal care products. • Local Grocery & Clothing establishments • • • • •

FUTURE GOALS & TARGETS
• Involve large number of food & clothing companies to sell food items/clothing at concessional rates • Get Govt. at the state & central level to implement widow pension programs • Involve local self-help group of woman volunteers to deliver food, clothing to the widows • Install database at key point in the Region – District Hospital, Primary health care centers for widow identification and delivery of health services

Initiative # 4 Datamation Foundation Mobile Phones/Pagers To Assist Leprosy Health Workers
CHALLENGE: • India contributes 400,000 new leprosy cases every year • Most Leprosy patients are from very poor background and cannot afford treatment • Deformed Leprosy patients need disability service at their door step. The community volunteers are required to provide domiciliary medical treatment, monitor the progress of the nerve damage and offer field based disability care • The Leprosy patients are mostly in thickly populated slums having very poor road and sanitary conditions

Intervention
• Way back in 1998, we delivered few hand sets and beepers ( pagers ) to the community volunteers & paramedical workers • The Para-Medical workers have also been given few mobile phones and beepers • This has helped prevent the occurrence of consequences such as reactions/neuritis and development of new disabilities

PARTNER:
Bombay Leprosy Project Cellular Companies(Tentative)

FUTURE TARGET/GOALS:
• Enhance coverage of the program by providing more mobile equipment • Implement other ICT initiatives such as smart cards or other easily operable devices for the disabled leprosy patients so that they get better access to basic necessities.

Initiative # 5 DATAMATION FOUNDATION: RANGE OF GRASS ROOT ICT INITIATIVES TO HELP WOMEN‟S VOLUNTARY GROUPS
CHALLENGE:
• Incidents of family violence & violence against women have increased manifold rapidly • Incidence of dowry death cases reported an increase of 15.2% over the previous year • Torture cases increased by 12.9% & incidence of molestation reported an increase of 0.9% over the previous year • Trafficking increased 4.5% • With the downturn in the Indian economy, violence against women has been increasing significantly

INTERVENTIONS
• Women empowerment is key to all round well being of the women consequently we work actively to create, sustainable employment opportunities for the women in the IT industry • Students trained by the women‟s group are actively placed in commercial organizations • Lobbying with the private sector to employ, large number of women • Design & set up of web-sites for the women‟s group

• Technical support in IT education, evaluation & performance appraisal of students • Small quantum of donations • Intelligent voice recording system (IVRS) to help log & analyze large number of complaints against female atrocities has been delivered to a woman‟s group
PARTNERS:

• • • •

Nari Raksha Samiti Udayan Prayas Deepalaya

Future Goals/Targets
• Deliver fully enabled enterprise wide computing models to help train young trainees in all facets of the corporate world • Deliver evaluation & performance appraisal in the local languages • Get at least 100 large corporate to reserve minimum 25-30% jobs for deserving and qualifying women

Initiative # 6 Datamation – Rural ICT Initiatives & Rural Connectivity
• We are in the process of setting up two multi-purpose internet centers in the outskirts of Jaipur Rajasthan. • Pilot projects have been entirely self funded & would be operated by our staff. • Services delivered – Computer Services & Job Work, E-Mail & Net-Surfing, Computer Servicing • Access to www.gaonsherhr.com (a site dedicated to small villages & towns of Rajasthan to start with) being developed by Datamation. • Dial-Up connectivity with an ISP hub 30-40 miles away from these tele-centers • Connectivity has been robust

• Spearheading local language content development in Hindi – Databases on Agricultural Practices, Arts & Culture of Rajasthan. • Self-Sustaining business model due to high degree of interest among the local community for agriculture & arts content. • Hand over to local community for operation only after 2 – 3 years of profitability. • Scale to adjoining villages & towns after six months.

Advantages of the Private Sector, Voluntary groups & Community working together.
• Sustainable & Replicable elsewhere • Wider participation ensures continued involvement of all stakeholders in growth & prosperity • Lesser conflict, lower manpower attrition & greater stability at the work place • Wider perspective of work & business makes business model highly endurable & profitable

THANK YOU


				
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