Studies conclusively show that increasing women's income is the most effective means of lifting a family out of poverty. Toward this end, VICYA has developed programs to improve the marketable skills and economic power of rural women. In 1997, VICYA founded a tailoring school using funds and sewing machines donated by the German embassy. To date, hundreds of village women have been trained.

Funding is always difficult. To offset the cost of training, each trainee is loaned the nominal tuition, which is then repaid after graduation. Students sell their products, and private individuals contract with us for inexpensive tailoring. VICYA plans to expand its training program to include information technology.

The SHG's are the ideal candidates for micro-economic development. They are organized and have proven their ability to save. We encourage them to continue building capital and we are applying for further development funds through the Indian government and foreign foundations.