Thiruvananthapuram, Feb 20: The Kerala government’s flagship programme Kudumbashree, aimed at poverty eradication and women’s empowerment, has created interest in Bahrain, a state minister said.
“I am leaving for Bahrain Friday after I received an invitation from the Bahraini Minister of Social Development Fatima bint Mohammed Al-Balooshi, who was here last month on a private visit and came to know about the Kudumbashree programme,” Minister for Social Welfare M.K. Muneer told IANS.
“The main purpose of the visit is to make a detailed presentation on this model women’s empowerment programme that has caught the attention of many outside our country,” Muneer added.
Kudumbashree was launched in 1998 as a joint programme between the state government and the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development. It was implemented through community development societies of poor women, serving as the community wing of local self governments.
“On her visit to our state last month, the Bahraini minister showed interest in various programmes that our government is doing for women here and also with regard to social welfare. We have broadly worked out a Bahrain-Kerala knowledge exchange programme and this would be taken up when I am in Bahrain,” Muneer said.
Kudumbashree has a three-tier structure in the state in which there are 1.94 lakh neighbourhood groups, 17,000 area development societies and 1,061 community development societies.
The minister said a team from Bahrain is expected to visit the state for a first-hand knowledge of the working of Kudumbashree and the dates would be decided while he is in Bahrain.