The encounter between Barry Howe and Cecile de Lacvivier from Alstom with LP4Y, in Bengaluru.
Barry Howe :
Hello. I’m Barry Howe, the Secretary General of the Alstom Corporate Foundation. I first came across LP4Y back in 2017 during a familiarization visit to its project in New Delhi. I was very impressed by the work being done there to give young ladies from highly disadvantaged environments a chance of securing a decent job as a first step on a career ladder. A decent job with decent pay which could, in time, make them financially independent. Selecting these ladies; securing their family’s permission and support; paying them some subsistence allowance for their participation; teaching them English; training them for work in a business; helping them to secure a first job that would take advantage of these new skills – this is all within the remit of LP4Y and they are very good at it.
Subsequently, I was delighted when, in 2018, LP4Y submitted a project for funding to the Alstom Foundation. Alstom funds were to support the development of a Life Project Centre (LPC), an incubator for entrepreneurial projects, in Devara Jeevana Halli slum area in Bengaluru, which would enable 30 Young women per year to be accompanied towards their social and professional integration.
Young women and mothers in this area have almost no opportunities to obtain life-skills based education or training and thus enhance their chances to get hired. This is why LP4Y chose to build an LPC in this zone.
Specifically, the Alstom Foundation funds supported the reconstruction of the building - constructing the upper floor and an annex building in front of the centre. The work started in November 2018 and was completed a year later.
What was especially appealing from the Alstom Foundation’s perspective was the proximity of the project site to locations in Bengaluru where Alstom has a major presence and several thousand employees. This gave rise to opportunities for volunteering amongst the Alstom staff in support of the LPC. I will therefore hand over to my colleague Cecile de-Lacvivier, who is working in Bangalore and who has participated in some of these volunteering activities.
Cécile de Lacvivier :
Thank you Barry! I am Cecile de Lacvivier, Head of Talent Management in India since 2019. I am an engineer and I have been working for Alstom for more than 10 years now, in different fields like Quality, Innovation, Training, HR.
I met LP4Y teams in Bengaluru for their Entrepreneur Day, in January 2020 and I have been impressed by the energy and courage of these young ladies. How they were able to be on the stage in front of a public and present their projects/ stories was amazing.
Unfortunately, our Alstom offices are quite far from their location in Bengaluru and the Covid crisis started, so it was difficult to propose any job. However, in order to prepare them to find a job, we decided to organise remote mock interviews with our recruiters’ team.
For the future, we would like to continue our partnership with LP4Y, extend it to all our locations where LP4Y is present and share testimonies from our female employees on site to help the youths to find a job they like.