Barbil: In an effort to reclaim the dying terracotta work, an age-old artisanship of Keonjhar district, JSPL Foundation, the CSR arm of Jindal Steel and Power Limited (JSPL), has come out to train the community members which will not only help them for new livelihood opportunities but also give back their socio-cultural identity.
A 90-day training programme has been organised at Aseikala village under Joda Block of the district. The initiative will benefit more than 30 families of Kumbhar community who are known for the traditional artsmanship since ages. Besides honing their skills, the fusion of traditional and modern art will be imparted to the trainees to suit the contemporary taste.
On the initiative, JSPL Barbil Unit Head Suresha G said, “Certainly, the project will be helpful in reviving the sector in the region which is well known for creativity of the artisans.”
On completion of the programme, successful trainees will be linked up for registration to the District Industries Centre (DIC) and provided with certificate. The certificate will qualify them to avail subsidized government loan and help them participate in different trade fairs across the state and beyond.
Aseikala Sarpanch Dilip Nayak appreciated the initiative and said, “With the involvement of government and no middlemen, now the artisans will be able to get fair price for their artefacts. I thank JSPL Foundation for this effort”.
Through various training programmes and workshops, JSPL Foundation consciously encourages traditional artisans in Odisha, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand and provides platform to mainstream them. In Odisha, JSPL in collaboration with DIC and ORMAS is supporting 30 terracotta women artisans in Paripara village of Angul District. After the training and necessary support, women artisans, who were traditionally denied to use potter wheels, are using electric potter wheels to improve their design and product. JSPL is providing design training, market linkage and other support.