A Citizens’ Centre is typically an IT kiosk equipped with computers, internet access, public phone, library and IT training material. Uniquely, CCEs serve a dual role: First, they are active IT-based revenue-generating enterprises for the women who run them. Second, they are the hubs for grassroots-level democracy, from where villagers are encouraged to file petitions, seek information on government schemes etc.
Hand in Hand’s Citizens’Centres are built around the concept of improving access to information, computing and communications which is a vital enabler to families’ economic and social empowerment. Not only do entrepreneurs earn between Rs 2,500 and Rs 15,000 per month, men, women and children have taken basic computer awareness courses, villagers have filed successful petitions for road repairs or water connections, and awareness messages about democratic rights and duties are being spread actively from these centres.