From the compiler


It is a delight to welcome you to the REEDS NEWS. India turns 66 this month. It indeed made good progress until now but far more remain to carry through. Millions of rural Indians still live below poverty line - whatever manner it is denoted, and concomitant issues of health, water, education and sanitation remain unaddressed to their reach and sustainability.


Agriculture growth is a concern. Notwithstanding the declining trend in agriculture's share in the GDP - 30% in Nineties to 14.5 % in 2010-11 and to 13.9% in 2011-12, it is critical from the income distribution perspective as it accounts for about 58 per cent employment in the country. The power of agriculture needs to be harnessed.


Appropriate skill building is a crucial need for the rural economy. The population of rural India alone is about 12% of the global population and a larger than the whole of Europe. If the 800 million rural Indians can be provided with the skills to be fully productive, imagine the impact on the economies national and global!

Given the fact that issues of rural development are complex and widespread, isolated initiatives may not be able to bring about large-scale social change. All stake holders have a role to play in addressing the challenges and enabling the rural transformation.


At REEDS, we do hope that that SKILLS2013: The International Conference on 'Life Skills & Livelihood Skills - Challenges for International Cooperation' being held in February 2013 will address several dimensions of skill development for economic and social prosperity and serve as a platform for international dialogue especially in the context of unorganized and rural sectors.

SKILS2013 is gaining momentum as you can notice from the composition of Committees for the conference and the organizations that are associated from www.skills2013.org, the website to the Conference.

REEDS International engagement in Skills Development

During my travel to Australia and New Zealand from 1 - 10 July, I have had an opportunity to meet up with few VET providers with whom we have developed acquaintances for the past few years and reflect upon the on-going and potential collaborative initiatives in the area of VET and Skills Development. We expect our continuing engagement would soon result in practical partnerships.

VET Providers

REEDS had an opportunity to coordinate a visit to Sue Freeman and Sandra Rawlings, Directors of First Impressions Resources, Australia - an ACPET member organization, at Hyderabad in July to a rural livelihood improvement Skills Development Program supported by the Ministry of Textiles, Government of India.

The skilling program was of a group of woman artisans towards their social and economic empowerment and in the process to keep alive traditional handicraft skills in embroidery. Sue feels Australian VET and Industry expertise would able to contribute in the technical areas of programs and that opportunity for exchanges of staff and mentoring would add value to such programs.

With best wishes on the occasion of Independence Day and EID-UL-FITR,

Ravi K Reddy
August 10, 2102

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