Business School for rural women in India

$84,370 $75,630
Raised Remaining
Mann Deshi Mahila using technology
Mann Deshi Mahila using technology

                                        Journey from B-school to Management Institute

                                  (Unique combination of finance and a rural business school) 

Story of Kerabai Khandekar: In 2006 Kerabai approach the bank to buy the mobile phone. At that time we felt why is she buying phone? Is her son forcing her to buy the cell phone and just for the sake of showing up? Our bank manger was advising her that why is she wasting her money? Kerabai said, “She is growing pomegranate and for the marketing she needs to contact traders for the market price of Pomegranate.” Kerabai also requested Bank to teach her how to operate cell phone. Business school conducts the course for electronic literacy for a day in which how to operate cell phone and calculator is taught. Bank advised Kerabai to take the course at Business school. After the course Karabai said, “She can contact traders for the sale of pomegranate and get better prices as price variates very fast and it is very necessary to sell the products as soon as possible once the prices are high. Even delay for a day can affect the price you get. It also helps to sale the product in time.” As Kerabai is located in remote village she can contact traders on phone and they can come to her field and buy the pomegranate.  Mann Deshi always grows with its clients like Kerabai.

 In short Mann Deshi bank plays the role of investor with patience and B-school plays the mentorship with understanding the situation.

 2012 year marks a turn in Mann Deshi Udyogini accomplishment. Mann Deshi launched B-School for rural women in December 2006 and reached to 46653 women graduates.   At the beginning, the school was focusing in vocational training such as tailoring, beauty parlor, food processing, veterinary and many other hobby courses. The courses were a success, and the demand was growing every year. Then, Mann Deshi, by observing the work of women entrepreneurs in rural area noticed that a lot of them were missing management tools. Therefore, since January 2010, the business school started to offer managerial training to its students allowing thousands of women to start a business or to extend their already existing one. Today, the managerial training is well established into the School and the business school is now a Management Institution. Mann Deshi is very proud of this program which is by far one of the biggest Mann Deshi’s accomplishments.

Big thank you to our donors support which enable Mann Deshi to transition from a training school to a management institute.

Dear Mann Deshi Supporters and Donors,

What makes the Mann Deshi B-School unique is that it lays no educational or age criterion for enrollment; has “any-day admissions” and offers courses ranging from two days to three months with fees from Rs.25 to Rs.1,200.  Founded in December 2006, it encourages and empowers rural women by offering courses to help them run independent enterprises as vendors, screen printers, photo-laminators, efficient goat de-wormers, bag-makers and computer operators.

Thus, an unlettered vegetable hawker like Aruna Gaikwad now uses a cellphone to source supplies from the wholesale market at Karad 100 km away to make profits at the weekly market in Vaduj.  Vanita Pise is yet another example who has sent up a successful milk vending business with the help of B-school.  She uses paper cup making machines for her operation and earns about Rs.4000 per month.  (In 2006, Pise received the CII Bharti Woman Exemplar Award by PM Manmohan Singh).

Since December 2006, nearly 40000 women have taken courses here to launch micro-business like selling cell phone recharge coupons, increasing fat content in milk from mulch cattle or selling pav bhaji and Chinese food.   Women have also harnessed mobiles to manage—and in some cases, expand—their client base, grow their businesses, and earn higher revenues. The ability to use mobile phones has also reduced women’s need to travel, thus saving them considerable time in managing their businesses and reconciling their work, personal, and family commitments. As they oversee growing enterprises, many Mann Deshi clients experience increased self-confidence and a greater sense of empowerment.

Please click on Mann Deshi football film which shows impact and added footage of business school

Thank you to Mann Deshi donors for their continuous support.




Dear Mann Deshi Donors and Supporters,

Wishing you a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!

“B-School at women’s doorstep”:  Mann Deshi with B-school together has been able to reach +40,000 women and have provided them capital and business training. 60% of women have been able to start and expand their business successfully.  

“Give a girl bike, Change her Life”:  Mann Deshi has given bicycle to more than 2400 girls.  Bike gives these girls an opportunity to carry on their advanced education. 


  •  Reached out +100,000 rural women (saving account holders)
  •  Graduated + 40000 women through B-school and out of that 24,600 women have became successful business woman and 80% took loan from Mann Deshi Bank. 
  • More than 5000 women have been able to get the share in the household property
  • Launched the E-Card system, a more efficient, and accessible and secure means to deposit and withdraw money and view transaction history of Mann Deshi client 

This would not have been possible without our supporters and partners.  And as we come to the end of another successful year, we want to thank those who have contributed to Mann Deshi’s success. 

The Mann Deshi aims to provide underprivileged rural women with the resources they need to improve their lives.  Mann Deshi works holistically to improve slummy women’s lives through a variety of financial services, business trainings and skills.

 Thus, we hope that you remember Mann Deshi when you think about buying gifts this holiday season.  Any donations you make will have a direct impact on the disadvantaged rural women and girls we serve, allowing them to improve their lives: your donation would truly be a gift that kept on giving.

Mann Deshi currently has three projects linked with Global Giving, a US and UK based organization that connects people with the countries and causes they are passionate about.  Global Giving is registered under 501c3 so that US donors receive tam exemptions.  For this donation Mann Deshi Foundation is registered under 80G and also has tax exemption.  Your tax-deductible donation will be wired directly to Mann Deshi Foundation from Global Giving. The projects you can contribute to are:

a)   Mann Deshi Udyogini (B-school for rural women in india) brings life skills and financial training to poor rural wage laborers, empowering them to become successful businesswomen. 

b)  The Freedom Ride Bicycle Program for Girls provides bicycles to girls in remote locations so that they can travel to school, and therefore complete their education

c)  Mann Deshi Champions (Sports Program) Mann Deshi's Champions Sports Program provides sport training to poor rural children, providing the opportunity to broaden their skills both physically and socially.

To make an anonymous donation, a donation on behalf of another person, or to donate as a gift in a friend's name, please visit and search "Mann Deshi Foundation", or go directly to Mann Deshi's link:

With many thanks and warm wishes for a wonderful Christmas holiday season and New Year.

Happy Holidays,


Yours Sincerely,



Ms.Sujata Mane, a long time client of Mann Deshi Mahila Sahakari Bank and B-School.  Sujata got training for fashion designing from B-school.   She took out her first loan to improve her tailoring business, but family problems did not allow her to repay the loan. After some time she applied again for a loan, but given her record the bank was not sure about her ability to repay the debt. In the end the Bank finally decided to allow her to take out a loan, on her name, in the amount of 25,000 INR meant to buy a noodles machine. The Bank suggested her to enter a Self-Help Group so that she could take advantage of useful advice from other women and more easily repay the loan. Her business started to grow, given that in the area where she lives and works, she was the only one making noodles. Soon she was able to repay the loan and take out a new one in the amount of 35,000 INR to buy a chili powder machine. Again, given the lack of competitors, she was able to profit hugely from the business of making chili powder, and soon she was able to repay even this debt. She then decided that, given the lack of grocery stores in the area, she would open her own small shop, besides the business of noodles making and chili powder. To be able to open the grocery shop she needed another loan from the Bank, in the amount of 70,000 INR, this sum would allow her to buy the initial stock of products she would then sell. She is now repaying this last loan, and given the success of her business she expects to be done within one year: her monthly profit exceeds 10,000 INR considering the chili powder, the noodles and the grocery shop. 

Her clients come to her small grocery shop just to buy her chili powder and noodles. She does not have the time to go to the weekly market: with the chili powder and the noodles machine and the grocery shop she is already busy enough, but clients are not missing either. Apart from single clients she also does sell her product to grocery shops in Mhaswad and sends parts of her product to her husband who takes care of selling chili powder and noodles in both Pune and Mumbai.  Sujata is also the owner of a land property

Being such a successful entrepreneur she applied for the 1,000 Deshi Entrepreneurs Program, and has already taken part in the first batch of 2011. The most useful experience drawn from the program has been the exposure visits. Sujata, says that during them she has been able to see how other women engaged in the same business behave, and she has learned a lot of practices she then applied to her own business. The workshops have been useful too, in particular she recalls one of the trainers suggesting her to buy raw materials (chili peppers in her case) in large quantities, wholesale if possible, so that she would be able to get a quite low price and make a higher profit afterward. She currently buys chili peppers from the nearby farmers, always in large quantities.

Her future plans include the buying of an automatic chili powder machine: currently the machine she owns is able to process 5 kg of chili peppers daily, while an automatic machine would allow her to process 15 kg of chili peppers daily. This would make a great difference for her, and she would be able to prepare enough chili powder to be sold outside of Mhaswad and also save time, allowing her to rent the machine to other women to make chili powder. She is also planning to buy a packaging machine (to seal the packages): currently she seals the packages all by hand with the heat of a candle, but a machine would allow her to be faster and more precise. Finally, she is working with Mann Deshi to develop her own brand, so that the packages will be recognizable when sold in Mhaswad but even outside of the city, in Mumbai and Pune. She will probably take out another loan to be able to buy the two machines she needs, but not before having repaid her debt to Mann Deshi.

Her success brought her to become the leader of a Self-Help group, made of 15 women. They have taken out a loan as a group, thus being each responsible of the repayment. She is in charge of collecting the amounts for the group and bringing them to the Bank in Mhaswad once a week. She soon became a model for many women and currently she is also engaged in motivating other entrepreneurs in nearby villages through meetings during which she talks of her own experience and the sources of her success.

This success has allowed her to sustain her family, which comprises 6 members, and to send her 2 children to school. She is indeed very proud of them: one is in the 7th standard and the other in the 3rd standard. The youngest one has passed the examination to get a monthly scholarship of 250 INR.

Like Sujata Mane B-School has been created more than 39000 graduates as on September 2011.

This will not be possible without the support of Mann Deshi’s donor.  Thank you very much to all the donors who have supported B-school for rural women.


Dear Mann Deshi Friends and Supporters,

Thank you very much for your continuous support to Mann Deshi Udyogini (B-School for Rural Women).  Over the past year, Mann Deshi trained roughly 13,400 students through its Business Schools and Mobile Buses; over 60% of whom attended its financial literacy and Deshi MBA program. Mann Deshi dedicated more time and resources, especially in the past six months, in ensuring their basic financial literacy and Deshi MBA targets were not only met, but actually exceeded. Here are some highlights:

  • 20% increase in the total number of students enrolled in 2010-11 (13,382) compared with 2009-10 (11,130)
  • Almost three-fold increase in the number of students enrolled in financial literacy in 2010-11 (6,565) compared with 2009-10 (2,280)

 273 Deshi MBA entrepreneurs trained in the first year of launching the flagship program (January 2010), almost 10% higher than the estimated number.  Deshi Entrepreneurs Project enables business women to grow their business to their own benefit of the entire community.

Over the past year, Mann Deshi’s senior team has worked to transition the culture of the organization from being vocational training centric towards a management and financial training focus. Their new sentiment is reflected in action – Mann Deshi’s senior team recently created three new mid-management level positions: Financial Literacy Coordinator, Deshi MBA Coordinator, and Business School Program Development Officer. The first two positions helps direct a greater amount of internal capacity, resources and management towards the financial literacy and Deshi MBA programs.  Mann Deshi has also established partnership with ACCION.  ACCION’s financial literacy and Dialogue on Business modules are very similar in their objectives and target audience to Mann Deshi’s financial literacy and Deshi MBA programs. 

Major Happenings at Mann Deshi, Press Coverage and More:

  • December / January 2010 – Launch of Deshi MBA
  • February – Spoke at Indian Philanthropy Forum
  • February – Dasra Social-Impact week two
  • March – EdelGive Social Innovation Honors 2010 (Livelihood Category) award received by EdelGive Foundation on March 4, 2010
  • Short listed for Women Exemplar Award launched by Confederation of Indian Industry
  • May – Dasra Social-Impact week three
  • May – Won Dasra Social-Impact Peer Grant funding
  • August – Introduction of e-card technology
  • Two new schools opened in Hubli and Satara, bringing total to 5
  • Certification by International Standardization for Organizations (ISO)
  • Membership in World Organization of Credit Council Unions (WOCCU)
  • November – Mann Deshi invited for Business Event Meeting with US President Barack Obama on November 6, 2010
  • Chosen semi-finalists in Ashoka Changemakers’ “Property Rights: Identity, Dignity & Opportunity for All” Competition
  • Chetna Sinha, founder of Mann Deshi nominated for CNN-IBN Indian of the Year 2010 for the “Public Service” category
  • February – Visit to Mann Deshi HQ at Mhaswad by Lael Brainard, US Under Secretary of the Treasury for International Affairs

 Again thank for your support to B-School.  Mann Deshi appreciates our donors support. 

 Sincerely Yours,

 Vanita Shinde


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Project Leader

Chetna Sinha

Mhaswad, Maharashtra India

Where is this project located?