Social entrepreneurship key to uplift of marginalised sections: K K Shailaja, Kerala Health Minister

Our Bureau | Updated on February 11, 2021 Published on February 11, 2021

Kerala Health Minister K.K. Shailaja

3-day global meet on gender equality gets under way at Kozhikode

The three-day International Conference on Gender Equality (ICGE) got under way at Kozhikode’s Gender Park on Thursday with the State Health Minister K. K. Shailaja emphasising the need to promote social entrepreneurship for the uplift of marginalised sections and to ensure gender equality by empowering and mainstreaming women and transgender persons.

Inaugurating the second edition of ICGE, Shailaja said South Asia’s first Gender Park would extend support to enterprises of women and transgender persons, which is a major component of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the United Nations.

The high-profile conclave has been organised by the state’s Department of Women and Child Development in association with UN Women.

“It is important to promote social entrepreneurship to help women and transgender persons enjoy equal status. They are often victims of gender discrimination and denied opportunities. There are many sectors that await the entry of women and transgender persons. The Gender Park will extend all support to them,” the Minister said.

The State Government is committed to ensuring equal opportunity for them in all spheres, including education, skill development and entrepreneurship. It is with this objective that The Gender Park has set up a dedicated study centre in association with UN Women. This centre will study issues concerning women and transgender persons from India, Bhutan, Maldives and Sri Lanka, she said.

An International Women’s Trade Centre is also being set up in the park for marketing products of women enterprises from these countries.

A Pradeep Kumar MLA, who presided over the inaugural session, said what has been envisaged by the concept of ‘gender equality’ will be realised by The Gender Park through its activities and programmes. A world-class convention centre, gender museum, library and amphitheatre would be developed as part of The Gender Park, he said.

The Gender Park CEO, PTM Sunish, said educational institutions should include gender equality in the syllabus to create greater awareness about that. Society’s conventional approach towards women and transgender persons should change. The Gender Park would make efforts to achieve gender equality in all spheres, he said.

Making a strong case for cultural empowerment of women, former Rajya Sabha Member Brinda Karat said it is high time that society discarded traditional cultural yardsticks. The centres of power always try to halt the upsurge of women when they take a step forward, and it is important to follow the Kerala model in breaking caste barriers, she said.

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Published on February 11, 2021
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