Microentrepreneurship Associate

About SEWA Bharat:

Founded by Ela Bhatt in 1972, the Self-Employed Women’s Association (SEWA) works to empower poor women in India’s informal economy by equipping them with the personal confidence, community support, and practical tools necessary to fulfill their needs and exercise their rights. With over 2 million active members across fifteen states, SEWA is a nationwide movement, as well as one of India’s largest and oldest nonprofit organizations.

SEWA is set apart by its ability to integrate state- and national-level strategies with grassroots values and priorities. Through its close ties to an extensive, diverse, and multigenerational network of members, SEWA brings women together into a supportive network, tailors its wide
range of large-scale development programmes to specific community needs at the local level, and provides both capacity building support and a national platform for women on the ground to voice their concerns and advocate for their rights at the highest levels of policy and industry. Through its philosophy of women’s empowerment, and its vision of securing self-reliance and full employment for one of India’s most vulnerable populations, SEWA unifies members across cultural, geographic, and linguistic lines to bring about sustainable, inclusive change from the ground up. Comprising a nationwide network of over 100 autonomous grassroots organizations, SEWA is coordinated by its national office, SEWA Bharat (www.sewabharat.org).

Programme Description:

SEWA Bharat runs a microentrepreneurship programme that works towards building resilient women microentrepreneurs, to address the needs of women-owned collective social enterprises and women micro-entrepreneurs as part of COVID-19 preparedness and response.
The COVID-19 pandemic has majorly impacted all businesses, especially women owned enterprises, who are either incurring income losses due to the recurring lockdowns, and/or are faced with the additional burden of domestic chores. With supply chains being affected,
and demand dwindling, these enterprises continue to pay fixed costs like salaries and rents forcing grave losses. This programme aims to provide technical assistance to entrepreneurs to help them gain better access to markets, finance and assets. In particular, SEWA Bharat
recognizes that the women will need extra resources to overcome the backsliding they faced during the lockdown. Training will assist women to use new tools and approaches for entrepreneurship through training in digital literacy and by linking women with e-commerce
opportunities and digital market information.

The specific objectives of the programme are as follows:

  • To help women nano and microentrepreneurs identify opportunities to diversify or expand businesses in the current COVID-19 context, understand their rights and entitlements and access avenues to improve their lives.
  • To strengthen social enterprises promoted by SEWA Bharat to help members prepare for and respond to COVID-19 through market-based approaches
  • To support the creation of an enabling environment that allows microentrepreneurs and enterprises to thrive.

SEWA Bharat runs this programme in 10 states, such as Delhi, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan, Punjab, Bihar, West Bengal, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, and Nagaland. SSKs are present in various forms and models across the states with the commission objective of outreach.

Job Description:

We are seeking a suitable candidate for the role of Microentrepreneurship (ME) Associate, who will be responsible for supporting the team in fulfilling the requirements of microentrepreneurs in the growth of their enterprises. Ecosystems for entrepreneurial sustainability
and growth neglect women microentrepreneurs at the bottom of the socio-economic pyramid – 98% of the enterprises owned and led by women are in the micro category as defined by the Ministry of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises. The ME Associate will play a critical role in identifying, assessing and supporting clusters or individual microentrepreneurs in their entrepreneurial journey.

The ME Associate is expected to have the skill set to recognize the challenges that microentrepreneurs face and design strategies to overcome them. There is a need to provide build capacity, offer solutions on product development and market linkages and extend business counselling support to women microentrepreneurs.

Responsibilities:

  • The Microentrepreneurship Associate will support identification of women microentrepreneurs (MEs)/cluster of microentrepreneurs, conduct a needs assessment and a scoping exercise to determine solutions that best fit making their enterprises thrive and sustainable.
  • The ME Associate should have the skill set to work on cluster activation which involves setup of that cluster including identifying microentrepreneurs, training for photography and platform management, linking to product development experts, figuring which market they can sell to, working capital requirement, etc.
  • They will be required to strengthen partnerships with other organizations working with women microentrepreneurs, ensuring leverage and building partnerships for nurturing clusters.
  • They will also work as a mediator between the needs of the microentrepreneurs and utilize the available resources to support them in their entrepreneurial journey.
  • The ME Associate will guide the field and state teams, and work closely with the microentrepreneurship vertical team.
  • To support the creation of an enabling environment that allows micro entrepreneurs and enterprises to thrive

Key Skills and Qualifications:

  • A Masters’s degree in social sciences or business administration from a recognized university is mandatory. Candidates with a Bachelors’s degree and exceptional work experience can be considered for the position.
  • 2+ years of relevant experience in the Indian development sector, social entrepreneurship, etc.
  • Strong oral, written, and interpersonal communication skills in both English and Hindi. These will be assessed in the interview. Ideal candidates will have experience working, writing, and communicating in Hindi.
  • Demonstrated ability to put together presentations and infographics.
  • Previous experience of undertaking fieldwork and field training.
  • Experience in developing and managing the micro-entrepreneurs’ clusters or working with individual women microentrepreneurs
  • Have a network to loop in experts, advisors, and other consultants.
  • Ability to take the initiative and leadership even with minimal supervision
  • Ability to work in an organized and efficient manner within a relatively unstructured work environment.
  • Strong understanding of and commitment to women’s economic empowerment and a passion for bringing about real, sustainable, large-scale change for women in India’s most marginalized communities

Location:

The position is based out of Delhi along with travel for 10-15 days in a month to the programme locations across 10 states. Preference would be given to female candidates and ready to commit to the tenure of the programme.

Application Process:

SEWA Bharat is an equal opportunity employer that encourages women and people from economically and socially excluded communities with the requisite skills and qualifications to apply for positions. Email the following to [email protected] by 21st October 2021.

  • Resume
  • Cover Letter (Includes your understanding of microentrepreneurship and experience on the same)
  • Please include specific details of your most recent salary.
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