ILSS Launches 7-week Hybrid Learning Programme for Emerging Women Leaders

The India Leaders for Social Sector (ILSS) has launched an intensive 7-week hybrid learning programme for emerging women leaders in the social sector. It is designed to support the leadership development journeys of emerging women leaders in the social sector. The programme aims to equip aspiring leaders with the knowledge, skills, and tools to advance their leadership journey and create an impact in the social sector, reads the official press release.

As per the “The Emerging Women’s Leadership in the Indian Development Sector” by ILSS, as many as 84.7 per cent of women vocalised the need for having an active support network of senior women leaders as mentors would positively affect their career growth, in the social impact space.

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The launch was attended by Nandita Das, Retd IPS Manjari Jaruhar; Natasha Zarine, Director of Ecco Sattva Environmental Solutions Private Limited, Sudarshan Suchi, CEO, Save the Children India, and Zubaan founder, writer, activist, Padma Shri awardee Urvashi Butalia, amongst others.

Actor, director, and social activist Nandita Das highlighted, “After becoming a mother at 40, it suddenly challenged my thoughts…thoughts of what I thought and what I knew, what I had thought I had internalised and was capable of. I started observing myself and the other women around me. I realised that until we individually, in our hearts, don’t change, the cumulative change will not happen as fast as we want it to. We are here because we need to hasten that change. After all, it is just taking too long, and many lives are perishing while we still think, feel, and understand our self-doubt and vulnerability.”

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IPS (Retd) Manjari Jaruhar, who is one of the first five women officers in India to qualify as an IPS candidate and the first from the state of Bihar talked about women’s representation across industries. “We have a long way to go, and our numbers remain minimal. There is 33 per cent reservation in all the police forces, but our numbers are less than 8 per cent to 9 per cent. Though the government is pushing hard, the numbers have yet to rise. According to a news report, many women lost their jobs and to achieve the target of a $5 trillion economy, India must have 45 per cent of women working in some sector or the other. Therefore, it becomes a non-negotiable aspect of our financial requirement.”

Addressing the audience during the event’s welcome address, Anu Prasad, the Founder and CEO of ILSS, said, “Women comprise 50 per cent of our population. We should have at least 50 per cent of the voice. In terms of numbers, we are a force. Yet we see that women have little or no voice in places of power, be it as representatives in Parliament, titans of the industry, the civil services or even the development sector.” She also highlighted that for gender parity, India holds the unceremonious 135th rank out of 147 countries worldwide, adding that a lot needs to be done in building an enabling environment to support women leaders”.

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