The booming information technology industry has created vast wealth for many in Bengaluru, nearly 2 million people still live in poverty. Slums are increasing by the year in the city due to the migration of the poor from various parts of the country. One such locality housing disadvantaged groups of the society is Shirke, enclosing four huge slums on one side and malls, marketplaces and small companies on the other. Most of its residents depend on insecure and poorly paid occupations, due to financial crisis and limited exposure.
This project envisages imparting vocational skills among the unemployed and deprived youth through formal training in computer application with spoken English. Other focus areas of this project include personality development and life skills (decision making, problem solving and much more).
Students are also engaged in activities like exposure visits, alumni meets and job fairs for a better understanding of the existing demands in the market for various trades. The placement cell develops links with several companies in fast emerging sectors like retail, hospitality and BPO. This six-month training would enable them gain access to the employment opportunities, becoming self-reliant and earning a dignified living.
Smile Foundation has partnered with IPDP, Integrated Project for Development of People, to implement the STeP project.