Building on the existing activities in the workers’ districts of Tirupur, our partner organisation SAVE encourages workers to join the Worker Education Groups, each of these groups has 15-20 members (women, men, or mixed). Once a group has been formed, it works through a four-year training plan with the support of the NGO SAVE. The subjects covered by the training plan go beyond general skills and include personal development, state social assistance, health and safety in the workplace and workers’ rights. The participants are also taught how to support each other and share their knowledge with the wider community.
The training builds on the basic principles of a positive feeling of self-worth. The aim is to overcome anxiety and to enable workers to cooperate and be proactive by enhancing their knowledge. Participants are asked to pass on their knowledge to at least five neighbours or colleagues. They are trained in workers’ rights so that they can apply these rights in practice. For this reason they are often regarded as leaders of their communities; this enables them to share their knowledge with many other workers.
It is a condition of participation that participants allow their children to attend school and promote schooling within their networks.