Women have partnered with self-help groups to run book cafes in Shimla

Women linked to self-help groups (SHGs) under Deendayal Antyoday Yojana – National Urban Livelihood Mission (DAY-NULM) will run Shimla’s newly constructed book cafes, Himachal’s Minister of Urban Development says , Suresh Bhardwaj. The Minister will launch this concept on September 17 at the Chaura Maidan book cafe.

In a press note, Bhardwaj said, “Book cafes have been built under the Smart City mission in Shimla city. “Book cafes in Chaura Maidan and Chota Shimla” have been inaugurated recently. We looked at different models for running these book cafes. Now we have decided that women linked to self-help groups registered under the DAYNULM program will run these cafes”. He said, “I promised to provide market space for SHG women in urban areas. So it will be a unique concept. In addition to showcasing and selling their products, the women will run the government-owned book cafes.

Shimla has over 200 self-help groups. Shimla MC NULM Division will coordinate with SHGs. “They will ensure transparency in the business,” he added. Bhardwaj added that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has always emphasized Deendayal Antyoday Yojana -NULM to empower women. “The lives of the urban poor are difficult because they don’t even have agricultural land or have limited livelihoods. This program has transformed the lives of many,” he said.

Whenever the Minister visited fairs or exhibitions, the SHGs raised the issue of marketing. “We’re working on packaging and branding, but providing a market was a major issue,” he said, adding, “We have book cafes in prime locations. Bibliophiles, students will have a peaceful, well-constructed place next to a platform for SHG women.” He said the Chaura Maidan book cafe will also help ease the stress of the library near Vidhansabha. “The idea behind this concept was to ensure that this property is used for readership purposes in addition to providing a platform for SHGs, rather than commercializing the space,” he added.

The minister, who also holds the co-operation department portfolio, said he is also considering a co-operative model for these SHGs. “A lot of work has been done in this area. A lot of funds have been spent as seed capital or for training women. Now the time has come to federate these SHGs or have a society where these SHGs have less government support and move towards the model of self-sufficiency,” he said. The minister added that SHG women who run a book cafe are the start of a self-sufficiency model for these women .(ANI)

(This story has not been edited by the Devdiscourse team and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Angela C. Hale