Amritsar, March 22
Twenty-year-old Priyanka always dreamed of being a staff nurse, but had limited resources. Yet, the course of Home Health Aide, which she had successfully completed from the Amritsar-based Multi-Skill Development Centre (MSDC) free of cost, has given wings to her dreams. Today, she is employed with Dr Om Parkash Eye Institute, a renowned eye care hospital.
Hailing from a very humble background, she now earns a reasonable amount after getting selected as ground duty assistant. “My father is a labourer doing petty jobs and mother is a domestic help. After completing my Plus Two from the Government Senior Secondary School at Putlighar, there was no one at home who could guide me on what to do next. I always wanted to be a nurse to serve the suffering. Then, I came to know about the MSDC from where I could opt for a course of my choice, that too free of cost. After completing the course, I was absorbed by a known institute which has given me a direction to achieve my goal in life and also support my younger sister and brother who are studying,” she said.
Similarly, Sukhpal Singh and Nishan Singh, both in their 20s, settled after qualifying professional courses through MSDC.
Sukhpal, who was partially handicapped in his left arm, did a computer course. Nishan Singh from Pingalwara, who is speech and hearing impaired, learnt the skills of hospitality industry. Luckily, both were absorbed by the five-star Welcomhotel of the ITC at Raja Sansi, Amritsar.
Earlier, with no regular source of income except for a meagre pension of Rs 3,000 per month from the welfare department, survival was difficult for Nishan. After completing the course in hospitality, he is now doing a housekeeping job in the hotel and earns enough to take care of his mother, the only one in his family to support.
His colleague Sukhpal works in the finance department as a computer operator. “I could learn to operate a computer with one hand which paid dividends in life and today I am self-sufficient,” he said.
There were identical success stories of MSDC trainees with the efforts of its placement initiative.
MSDC is set up by Sun Foundation, chaired by Rajya Sabha member Vikramjit Singh Sahney, in collaboration with the state government’s Punjab Skill Development Mission, running job-oriented programmes for the youth in the age-group of 18-35 years free of cost. “It’s an initiative to tackle unemployment. The motive was to train at least 1,000 students per year at the Amritsar centre. Recently, we have awarded 1,008 job letters in the private sector,” he said.
Various courses in nursing, home health aide, food and beverage, sales executive, customer care, data entry, graphic designing, fashion designing, electrician and other technical skills are offered here.
In a new initiative, training for Army recruitment has also been started so that the youth of Punjab gets into the Defence forces. Since the beginning of the batches in the year 2021-22, MSDC Amritsar has trained a total of 1,188 trainees in different trades.
He said there is a proposal to further boost multi-skill learning programmes with assistance from the Government of India under a scheme called STRIVE (Skills Strengthening for Industrial Value Enhancement) in collaboration with the Punjab government too.
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