2008 India BRPID Projects
India BRPID Projects
India: Career and Professional Counselling Courses for Women Living in Poverty
Indian Federation of University Women’s Associations
Aimed particularly at helping young women living in poverty, this project set out to transform discriminatory social attitudes towards women, whilst at the same time improving their social status through guidance counselling. During the period 2008-2010, IFUWA targeted secondary schools in low-income areas with aptitude testing materials to help female students identify their interests, talents and skills. Career counselling centres were established in these schools, and IFUWA members served as resource people, helping girls fill out test forms, acting as counsellors, speaking to students about their professional lives, talking about vocational training, and leading visits to universities.
Approximately one fifth of IFUWa’s membership were involved in this country-wide project, with the aim of making a real difference to the lives of many young women in India.
During 2008, over 700 girls in 12 schools in different regions of India were tested using two tests. These were the Interest Inventory Test – a 300-question multiple choice test which identifies 13 areas of career options and the ME Tree Test, consisting of a free hand drawing of a tree, where the student is asked to put her interest and skills at the root and her goals and achievements for the future in the branches.
IFUWA members worked very hard to convince school authorities about the importance of this project and took a lot of time to explain the nature of the tests to the female students. Test material was translated into regional languages to give students a better understanding of the tests and what was required.
The project resulted in a lot of positive feed-back from parents, students and teachers. The project also increased interaction among IFUWA members and increased the amount of dialogue and cooperation between IFUWA and other NGOs such as Soroptimists, Lions Clubs and Local Women’s Councils.