Digital Literacy Of Tribals At Centre's Goal

The ‘Going Online As Leaders’ (GOAL) programme seeks to empower tribal youths in harnessing the full potential of digital platforms, enabling them to learn new ways of doing business

The Going Online As Leaders (GOAL), launched by the Ministry of Tribal Affairs (MoTA) and Facebook (now Meta) in 2020, is now a major helping hand in making tribals digitally literate. This programme has helped to upskill tribal youths to harness the full potential of digital platforms and tools, enabling them to learn new ways of doing business. 

Pooja Lohra

Pooja Lohra, a member of the Asur Tribe in Jharkhand, has a keen interest in Resin art and wants to build her entrepreneurial skill so that she can take her interest to a profitable business. Under the GOAL programme, she was given training on how to use Meta tools and resources. Empowered by the course, she created a page on Facebook called ‘Siblings Garden’ where she promotes her product and showcases her art. 

Skalzang Dolma

Skalzang Dolma, a resident of Tunah village in Leh, belongs to Bot Tribe. Growing up in a region at a height of 34,000 mt, she had limited access to digital media and the internet.  At this stage she learnt about the GOAL programme through one of the WhatsApp groups, and the training proved to be life-changing. Through the programme, she met her mentor Ishtiaq Ali, who not only helped her in honing her soft skills like speaking Hindi and English more fluently but helped her in confidence building, leadership and entrepreneurial skills. This gave her the confidence to create and run her own Facebook page that goes by the name ‘Lamstan’. She posts regularly about her community with an aim to preserve her culture and spread more awareness.

“The GOAL programme has helped me build my own venture called Lamstan Young Association. Today, at least one person from every household in my village has become a part of this association and we all share and teach each other our skills. While the craftsmen in my village like my grandfather create musical instruments and their traditional hats called ‘sertot’, the women are better known for their weaving and knitting skills. Through Lamstan Facebook page I showcase their work beyond their village and also get to talk about my community, culture and tradition,” Skalzang Dolma said in a statement.

Divya Bhukiya

Bhukiya Divya, 29 years old belongs to the Lambadi Tribe in Telangana. She always aspired to become an entrepreneur and start a business in the food processing industry. When she came across the GOAL programme, it was one step closer to her mission to become an Entrepreneur. She recalls her experience during the programme “It was an immense pleasure to be a part of this prestigious programme. The programme structure was flexible and easy to connect with, it helped me refresh my skill set in digital literacy and improved my passion for entrepreneurship. Through the entrepreneurship sessions and listening to guest speakers, I learnt finer details of starting a business and about potential challenges that may arise during the journey.”

The training happened virtually for every participant. They were provided smartphones through which they could attend live classes. Participants did face minor disruptions due to network issues in their respective areas. Covid-19 also posed several challenges in the regular delivery of the programme, as many of the mentors and mentees associated with the programme were dealing with health and family-related challenges during the second wave. To find a solution to these obstacles all participants of the programme were given access to all training sessions that were recorded and the recordings were maintained on a Learning Management System (LMS), which they could access from their phones through a mobile app.

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