UNIDO begins Cluster Development Agents training at NIC, NEDUET

Karachi : The United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) initiated a six-week Cluster Development Agents training activity under the Poverty Alleviation and Inclusive Development Across Rural Sindh (PAIDAR) programme funded by the European Union (EU). The training at the National Incubation Center (NIC) housed at the NED University of Engineering and Technology (NEDUET) has 30 participants from five selected districts of Sindh (Thatta, Sujawal, Larkana, Tharparkar and Badin) representing community organisations, government representatives and academia.
PAIDAR is a five-year programme, implemented by UNIDO, and funded by the EU. The programme supports the government of Sindh by implementing the economic growth agenda of the Sindh Poverty Reduction Strategy in selected districts and aims to contribute to sustainable poverty reduction by improving the livelihoods of poor communities, including women and youth in Sindh province.

The six-week extensive training covers value chain analysis, business models, research and analysis, and soft and hard skills to enable the participants to become connectors between the communities in Sindh and the PAIDAR programme’s initiatives for entrepreneurship development, local problem-solving, and business opportunities—areas that need immediate support post devastation caused by the recent floods. This training will include taught lessons as well as extensive field work by the participants.

UNIDO international and national trainers/experts will be carrying out the training sessions at NEDUET for a week before the participants start their fieldwork in the selected districts of Sindh.

Badr Ul Islam, National Programme Coordinator PAIDAR while introducing the programme and training to the participants said the Cluster Development Initiative is a successful approach developed by UNIDO that has seen international success and impact as it follows a pro-poor economic growth model that creates opportunities for poor and supports broad-based and inclusive development. He urged the participants to make maximum use of the expertise of the trainers to imbibe knowledge and skills to engage communities better.

Dr Kaiser Bengali, senior economist and advisor on poverty reduction remarked that the training is a good opportunity for all participants to learn the methodology that will enable them to become a link to the community and the programme and help the community to benefit from the programme interventions on poverty reduction. He said that Sindh, through various poverty reduction and business development initiatives, is working to enable economic growth and improve the livelihoods of the people.

Pro Vice-Chancellor, NEDUET, Prof Dr Muhammad Tufail welcomed the participants and the PAIDAR team and said that the NED university is happy to collaborate with UNIDO for this training and other initiatives that can help reduce poverty in Sindh. He informed that the National Incubation Center, housed at NED has enabled some well-known startups and the university looks forward to success stories from the communities that Cluster Development Agents will be engaging with through PAIDAR