With an aim to strengthen the Government of India’s Pradhan Mantri Gramin Digital Saksharta Abhiyaan (PMGDSA) to enable employability through digital literacy, SAP has launched ‘code unnati’, a multi-year, collaborative digital literacy and software skills development initiative along with ITC and Larsen & Toubro Public Charitable Trust.
Under the project, SAP partners with 6 diverse non-profit organizations to impart digital literacy to children, adolescents, the differently-abled and other citizens and drive employment-led software skills development for the underprivileged. This initiative envisions to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals of – No Poverty, Quality Education, Decent Work & Economic Growth, and Partnership For the Goals. SAP will provide technology infrastructure, expertise on course curriculum & pedagogy, delivery mechanisms and teachers.
“Only 10% of India’s population is digitally literate,” said Deb Deep Sengupta, President & Managing Director, SAP Indian Subcontinent. “With technology at the core of everything we do, it is our responsibility to join forces and collaborate with India Inc. to help create a Digital India. ‘code unnati’ is envisioned to equip citizens with the most pertinent IT skills that will make them more relevant in the job market, and empower them to become future-ready.”
ITC and Larsen & Toubro Public Charitable Trust will enable outreach in far flung, tribal and inaccessible regions with adequate monitoring and evaluation and governance support, to implement the program via NGO partners. ‘code unnati’ will significantly emphasize on advanced software skills relevant for Industry 4.0 and employment creation, with an intent to fill the gap of 3.5 million technologically skilled and educated citizens required for India to be known as a digitally literate nation.
“ITC’s Social Investments Programme spread over 84 districts in 20 States in India has enabled a multiplier impact on beneficiary communities enriching livelihoods in the present and future. ITC’s partnership with SAP will enable the ‘code unnati’ initiative to make a deeper contribution in spreading digital education amongst children in rural Andhra Pradesh, with special focus on the girl child,” said Dr. Ashesh Ambasta, EVP and Head – Social Investments, ITC Limited.
“Our association with SAP CSR India goes back to 2014 for digital literacy mission in Talasari, Palghar district in Maharashtra, where we have been digitally empowering tribal youth and citizens. code unnati will further bring in United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) as knowledge partner for skilling & career counselling initiatives for the beneficiaries. With code unnati, we plan to expand to other states like Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh as well as other parts of Maharashtra, with the aim that technology can create social impact for the last mile and people at the bottom of the pyramid,” said Ashok D Shahane, VP, Larsen and Toubro Limited & Trustee, Larsen Toubro Public Charitable Trust.
Special focus has been put on creating an ICT environment at every Gram Panchayat. 100 code unnati Community Services Centers will be launched to provide training to the Sarpanches (Village Council administrators) and educate local citizens on effective utilization of various available e-services. Under PMGDSA, L&T Public Charitable Trust and SAP have already started 3 Community Services Centers in Maharashtra and 33 in Rajasthan.
In the pilot phase till next year, the initiative will focus on rural areas of Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Gujarat, Rajasthan as well as urban disadvantaged demographies in Bangalore, Mumbai, Delhi-NCR, Kolkata, Ahmedabad, Pune, Vizag and Hyderabad.