Published On: Fri, Feb 11th, 2022

NITI Aayog, UNDP India launch Community Innovator Fellowship

New Delhi: NITI Aayog, in collaboration with UNDP India, launched the Community Innovator Fellowship (CIF) on the occasion of “International Day of Women and Girls in Science” on Friday.

This is going to be a one-year-long intensive fellowship programme

The fellowship is developed as a pre-incubation model which will provide youth with an opportunity to establish their social enterprise focusing on Sustainable Development Goal-based solutions for solving community issues.

This is going to be a one-year-long intensive fellowship programme which has been designed for an aspiring community innovator, irrespective of their socio-economic background.

During the course of this fellowship, each fellow will be hosted at one of the Atal Innovation Mission’s Atal Community Innovation Centres (ACICs) and shall acquire SDG awareness, entrepreneurial skills, and life skills while they are working on their idea.

The ACICs would nurture youth-led innovations by providing suitable resources in terms of operating facilities, co-working space, maker labs and a dynamic business network to the innovator.

Through the ACICs, the fellowship will propel the journey of an innovator from ideating to commercialising via a focused one-year model. The CIF Programme will focus on facilitating knowledge and capacity building among aspiring community innovators essential to their entrepreneurship journey. This is one of the ways with which AIM shall try and achieve participation of youth in mainstreaming social enterprise as a culture in the start-up ecosystem as well as promoting womenpreneurs from different regions in India.

Addressing the launch event, NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar said: “This fellowship is a year-long programme that aims to provide young community innovators necessary infrastructure and knowledge building in their entrepreneurial journey. This is a propelling initiative to harness the creativity and the innovation potential that grassroots of India hold.”

NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant said: “Creating a pre-incubation space for young and energetic innovators is a very important step in building vibrant, inspiring solutions for community problems. This fellowship is an ingenious way to engage the young change makers as well as various other stakeholders in the community innovation ecosystem in building holistic and inclusive innovations.”

ACICs were established with a focus to develop start-up and innovation ecosystem in the underserved regions of the country. Currently, there are 12 ACICs across 9 states and the target is to establish 50 such centres across the country.

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