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United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), in partnership with SAP, launched the Project Code Unnati, to promote digital skilling and entrepreneurship development for youth and women across three districts in Karnataka.

The initiative was inaugurated by Dr. C. N. Ashwath Narayan, Hon’ble Minister for Electronics, IT and BT, Science and Technology, Higher Education, Skill Development, Entrepreneurship and Livelihood, Government of Karnataka, in the presence of Dr. Shalini Rajneesh (IAS), Additional Chief Secretary, Department of Planning, Programming, Monitoring and Statistics, Government of Karnataka, Dr. S. Selvakumar (IAS), Secretary, Department of Skill Development, Entrepreneurship and Livelihood, Government of Karnataka, Mr. Ashwin D. Gowda (IRS), Managing Director, Karnataka Skill Development Corporation, Government of Karnataka, Ms. Sindhu Gangadharan, Senior Vice President and Managing Director, SAP Labs India, and Mr. Amit Kumar, Head, Inclusive Growth, UNDP.

As part of the Project Code Unnati, SAP and UNDP have curated three broad work-streams, that will directly impact the lives of over 20,000 youth, 5000 women, and 300 community-based enterprises in the districts of Dakshina Kannada, Raichur, and Bengaluru Rural during the project duration of three years. These include:

Imparting digital literacy, enhancing entrepreneurial skills, and providing digital financial education for women

Building digital skills and entrepreneurship development at the university level for youth

Connecting youth to the Government incubation centers (Atal Incubation Centres), and providing them with opportunities to participate in design-thinking workshops, innovation challenges, and boot camps

Expected impact of SAP and UNDP partnership

20,000 youth will undergo 21st century and digital skills training coupled with Entrepreneurship Development Programmes (EDPs) in the target districts

Students will have the opportunity to attend and participate in design-thinking workshops, demonstrations, digital skills championship leading to scholarships, Youth Co Lab innovation challenges, boot camps, and connecting them with Atal Incubation Centers (AICs) of NITI Aayog in Karnataka

Creating a direct impact on the lives of at least 5000 women as a part of the Entrepreneurship Awareness Programme (EAP) 3,000 women from 500 self-help groups (SHGs) and micro-enterprises will be trained as part of the Entrepreneurship Development Programme (EDP)

300 women would be able to initiate their own businesses in three years, thereby increasing income level within 18 months of the commencement of the programme

Raising awareness at various levels by connecting industry and professional linkages, employee volunteering, and mentorship

Sindhu Gangadharan SVP, SAP User Enablement & MD, SAP Labs India said “SAP’s Code Unnati in partnership with UNDP and the Government of Karnataka, aims at youth empowerment through employable skill training, career guidance, and entrepreneurship ecosystem in the State. To strengthen the New Education Policy of the Government of India, we created the content in Kannada along with UNDP, which will be available through the Code Unnati mobile app. Along with UNDP, SAP will also augment the rural entrepreneurship ecosystem to foster an inclusive and equitable economic development in Karnataka.”

Amit Kumar, Head, Inclusive Growth, UNDP India, said, “The COVID-19 pandemic has compelled the world to embrace a new normal, with physical distancing being the way of life today. Equipping and empowering youth and women to utilize opportunities for transformation is critical during the pandemic. Our partnership with SAP will not only maximize our collective effort but will allow young people and women in India to take charge of their own lives and, in turn, make their communities a better and more inclusive space.”

Employees of SAP Labs India will provide strategic mentorship for all the initiatives. SAP Labs India has also created the Code Unnati digital platform as a mobile application which provides access to over 230 courses for Youth and the workforce of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).