Parivartan – Supporting livelihoods through vocational training

An outreach worker meets with a woman at the GSNP+ office in the city of Surat, Gujarat, India.

Key information

  • Organisation: Alliance India and Gujarat State Network of People living with HIV (GSNP+)
  • Country: India
  • Region: Asia and the Pacific
  • Stage of innovation:
  • Start date: March 2021
  • End date: July 2022
  • Type of innovation: Stage 3: Pilot
  • Budget: 100,000 USD
  • Funder: Elton John AIDS Foundation (EJAF)

Summary of intervention

COVID-19 and related lockdowns and restrictions caused significant loss of income for many people. Some families lost their main breadwinner. Those who relied on sex work for their income were unable to work during the lockdowns and others were forced to start sex work for the first time.

In response, Alliance India and GSNP+ engaged in the Parivatan Project to explore livelihood options for families affected by COVID-19. The project team worked with the community to identify the skills they needed to sustain them in the future and collaborated with government-recognised institutes to provide short vocational training courses for community members. Parallel to this, the project also supported eligible clients to access government assistance programmes.

Despite delays, Alliance India and GSNP+ successfully made connections with suitable training providers and enrolled people in short courses: 42 people affected by COVID-19 were enrolled in three vocational courses – two computer courses and one for beauty therapy.


This kind of intervention needs more time at the planning stage, as the process is time-consuming – from finding the right institute to partner with, contracting them, agreeing which courses to offer and recruiting potential trainees. It is also important to consider the cost of travelling to the institute as some participants may need their expenses covered. Due to COVID-19, many community organisations are seeking ways to improve opportunities and livelihoods for marginalised communities and providing vocational training is one way of doing this.

While this pilot is at an early stage, one critical lesson is to partner with institutes that provide nationally-recognised certificates. It is also important to explore institutions that can offer a range of courses and link to work placements or bank loans for those enrolled in their courses.

Find out more information about the Accelerating Innovation project.