Skills, Employment, Entrepreneurship and Innovation Department (SEEID) and Directorate of Vocational Education and Training (DVET) in partnership with eClerx Services Ltd. and Lighthouse Communities Foundation (LCF), launched the first Mumbai Lighthouse at ITI, Mulund.  This aspirational, spacious 3000-sq.ft area consists of multiple training rooms and is a sunlit, smart space for community youth. Youth from low-income communities, aged 18-35 years, enrol into the Mulund Lighthouse to embark on a holistic, personalised and fully mentored livelihood journey. The funding from eClerx supported the space renovation and basic infrastructure at the Lighthouse, along with the day-to-day and skilling expenses of the Lighthouse.

The Lighthouse program runs nationally in 4 States and 10 cities. This highly successful Public Private Partnership program has enabled fundamental positive shifts in the lives of 32,000 youth in Maharashtra. The unique aspect of the Lighthouse program is the focus on ‘self-discovery’. It enables each youth to know themselves, discover their strengths, set their own goals and meet them. In this way, it goes far beyond being only a ‘job-placement’ program. These life skills help young people carve out a better future, with a sense of wellbeing and purpose.

The Lighthouse is an exemplary public-private partnership model. Under this unique PPP, DVET and SEEID have provided the space and eClerx Services Ltd. has fully renovated and designed the Lighthouse for the community youth. eClerx is committed to livelihoods for low-income youth in Mulund and is the donor partner for two additional Lighthouses already set up in Pune and Pimpri-Chinchwad. Lighthouse Communities is responsible for the design and implementation of the program.

Hon’ble Commissioner Smt. Nidhi Chaudhari,- Skills, Employment, Entrepreneurship and Innovation Department Maharashtra; Shri. Digambar Dalavi, Director, Directorate of Vocational Education and Training, Maharashtra, Shri. P. D. Mundhra, Co-founder and Executive Director, eClerx Services Ltd inaugurated the Mulund Lighthouse today. Shri. Yogesh Patil, Director- Maharashtra State Board of Skill, Vocational Education & Training, maharashtra state,  Dr. Ganesh Natarajan, Chairman, Lighthouse Communities and Ms. Ruchi Mathur, CEO, Lighthouse Communities were present at the ceremony.

Over 500 youth have been impacted in the first nine months at Mulund Lighthouse with more than 115 placed in employment. Technical skills, life skills, job competencies, and continuous mentoring are provided by this initiative. It is an all-encompassing development programme that acknowledges the numerous vulnerabilities of youth who are underprivileged. Free short-term programmes are offered in healthcare, e-commerce, retail, banking, finance, insurance, information technology and beauty & wellness industries.

Addressing the gathering Commissioner- Skills, Employment, Entrepreneurship and Innovation Department Maharashtra, Smt. Nidhi Chaudhary said, “The Lighthouse program is tailored to each student’s abilities, interests, and aspirations. The ‘foundation course’, a unique initiative in modern-day skilling programs,  enables confidence and life skills while youth also learn collaboration, leadership, problem-solving, spoken English, and basic digital literacy, all essential workplace competencies in the 21st century workplace. The focus is on building agency and giving young people the confidence to make informed decisions. Hence, rather than merely providing employment, the program enables young people to remain in jobs and build a career.”

Dr. Ganesh Natarajan, Chairman of Lighthouse Communities expressed his heartfelt gratitude and congratulations to the dignitaries and community members present at the launch of the first Lighthouse under this state level partnership in Mumbai. “We are committed to changing the lives of a million of our fellow citizens by 2030 and the partnership with like-minded institutions like DVET, SEEID and eClerx Services Ltd. are the wind beneath our wings as we fly to new destinations”, he said.

Shri. Digambar Dalavi, Director, Directorate of Vocational Education and Training, Maharashtra shared that, “The partnership with Lighthouse Communities Foundation is a unique initiative of the Department, and one that has potential to significantly impact the vocational skilling ecosystem in the state. Our ambition is to leverage the expertise of various organisations in driving the larger goal of building a skilled India, fit for the future. In this regard, this partnership can provide a proof-of-concept for various other state governments towards fostering lives and livelihoods for young people in India.”