“Rekindling hopes, rebuilding society,” says the tagline of Koshish, a corporate social responsibility initiative launched by the Institute of Computer and Finance Executives (ICFe) and Prayas, a Delhi-based NGO.

Aimed at helping the economically and socially marginalised students, Koshish will provide training in banking, finance, soft Skills and insurance at a nominal cost. The programme seeks to impart skills to nearly 5,000 students, and help provide placements.

Resources and training for the courses will be provided by ICFe, while the task of identifying beneficiaries has been assigned to Prayas.

Addressing a press conference here on Wednesday, Prayas general secretary Amod Kanth said Koshish seeks to achieve inclusive growth for marginalised sections of the population since reservations are only valid in the government sector. This “unique initiative”, he said, would enable people to seek jobs in the private sector as well.

To be trained at Koshish, an applicant should have completed Class XII and the family income should be less than Rs.1 lakh a year, said Prayas director Arun Grover. The applicants will appear for an assessment that will enable Koshish to place them in the appropriate course suited to their skills.

The average cost per student ranges from Rs.16,000 to Rs. 32,000 depending upon the nature and duration of the course. ICFe (Nexgen) will subsidise cost by 50 per cent, and the rest will be sponsored by PSUs, corporate houses and philanthropists. A token amount will be charged from the students.

According to CMD ICFe Santosh Mangal, Tata Steel, Reliance- ADAG, ONGC, Steel Authority of India, Aircel, Bharti Airtel and Bill Gates Foundation are a few organisations that have shown interest in the initiative.

According to Mr. Kanth, Prayas has access to 30,000 children in the marginalised sections because of its ongoing projects in various parts of the country.

Koshish will extend a helping hand to underprivileged SC/ST, Muslim girls, orphans and children of war widows.

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