Kajal started looking for a job on completing 12th standard.
“My father is an auto-rickshaw driver in Delhi. I have six siblings. To pay for food and all our education with his small income is really difficult. I wanted to support my family as soon as I finished higher secondary,” Kajal explains. Kajal’s mother is a home-maker. Her siblings are in school.
The first time Kajal heard of the Magic Bus Livelihood programme was from her friend. “She was in a good place and had a good experience of the training that Magic Bus provides. I was hopeful I could get a job too,” Kajal responds. The way the programme was carried out surprised her the most. “We had activities that were engaging and fun followed by classroom training where we felt a lot more involved,” she points out.
It was this involvement that helped her break out of her shyness and lack of confidence. “When I joined Magic Bus, I could barely speak a sentence without stumbling and mixing up. But look at me now; I am not so affected by people. I can make a point.” This confidence is what Kajal acquired during the training at Magic Bus. She also learnt how to use a computer and face an interview.
When Marks & Spencer offered her an internship at the end of her training with Magic Bus, she was overjoyed. “I told my parents I would begin working in a big company,” she says with a laugh. The Marks & Start internship proved to be an enormous learning experience for Kajal. “I learnt skills needed to be a good retail salesperson. From Mondays to Thursdays, between 11.00am and 5.30pm, Kajal learnt about customer service, retail sales, visual merchandising, cashiering, back of house stock management, and administration.
“Had it not been for a Buddy they assigned to us right at the beginning of the internship, all of this would be a lot of information. The Buddy was a mentor who helped us learn better,” she says.
At the end of the internship, she was offered a job with Marks & Spencer. “I earn a CTC of Rs. 25,000 a month. Saying that aloud feels good. But honestly, without this job we would have really struggled to eat during the lockdown. My father could no longer go out to work. He met with an accident and is now bedridden,” she adds with growing concern.
Kajal helps out her family to cope with her father’s accident and loss of income during the lockdown. She also wants to study further and get better and better at her job. “I can be a Manager one day,” she signs off.Back