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Leaving an Indelible Imprint

Running a state-of-the-art Offset Printing Press is not everybody's cup of tea and certainly not for a small group of ordinary village women. However, showing great fortitude the 'SWATHI A' Women SHG has broken the stereotype and proved that together they can take up any challenge and build up a blooming business of their own. The 'SWATHI OFFSET PRINTING PRESS' established by the SHG is presently catering to the printing needs of a wide range of clients in and around Kasargod district.

Activity

Offset printing press established and run by 'SWATHI A' SHG of Chemnad village, Kasargod district in Kerala.

The SHG from Chemnad village was formed in March 2002 with 19 members. They opened an S.B account with Perumbala Service Cooperative Bank. In due course ,the members deliberated on taking up some income generating activity. As a couple of members had some experience in working in old block printing units, the idea of starting a printing unit germinated. They took an internal loan of Rs.1500/- from the SHG and set up the unit. Initially, they received small orders.

Nature of Intervention

Five group members took personal loan of Rs.0.10 lakh each. Some old machineries were purchased and the group started their operations in a small way. One member in the group was sent for a six month DTP course. Then EShakti happened. The SHG was digitized on NABARD's EShakti portal.

Digitisation facilitated further loans, with which the group purchased more computers and printing equipments and moved into new premises. The unit has grown by leaps and bounds and they ventured into Multi Colour Printing under the name 'SWATHI Graphics'. The unit has acquired the necessary permits for running an enterprise. 

The Impact

Income Rs.0.15 lakh to Rs.0.18 lakh per member/month

The average monthly turnover of the unit is presently about Rs.5.5 lakh and salary expenses Rs.2 lakh. The unit is providing direct employment to 13 women. Out of this, as many as four members are drawing Rs.600/- per day while nine are drawing Rs.500/- a day. The group is having plans to acquire more sophisticated printing machinery and venture into new avenues, in due course.

Critical Determinants 

  • Like-mindedness of the members
  • Vision to set a goal and achieve it with systematic planning
  • Keeping pace with technology and trends 

Source : Creating Livelihoods, Changing Lives 



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