26 February, 2024

Striving for success

Kiran Kamble’s journey has been one of tenacity, perseverance and extraordinary resilience. Thanks to Tata STRIVE, he is now securely on a path to fulfil all his dreams

Thanks to SSDC, Kiran is happy, optimistic and confident
Thanks to SSDC, Kiran is happy, optimistic and confident
Thanks to SSDC, Kiran is happy, optimistic and confident
Thanks to SSDC, Kiran is happy, optimistic and confident

‘Inspiration’ takes on a new meaning when one talks to Kiran Kamble. The Retail Sales Associate at Tata Star Bazaar has suffered the slings and arrows of fate and faced a sea of troubles before emerging victorious.

Kiran comes from a very humble background. His younger sister has needed special care since her childhood, and the little family of four often fell short of money. If Kiran had one ambition, it was to take care of his family. So, when he completed his 12th standard boards, he enrolled for his BA degree and began working part-time to contribute to the family income.

Unfortunately, tragedy struck. A near-fatal accident left the then-seventeen-year-old Kiran comatose for two years. When he finally recovered consciousness, it was to the realisation that he had a permanent disability in his right arm and leg. His recovery was followed by five years of regular hospital visits that drained the family’s life savings and even forced them to sell their home.

Not giving up

It was a difficult time for the family, but more so for the young man whose main objective in life was to be an asset to his family. But he was determined not to give up. The accident had destroyed his childhood dream of joining the police force. “But, what it couldn’t take away was my determination to live life to the fullest and help my family in every way possible,” he says. His voice reflects his steely resolve.

Fortuitously, he came across Tata STRIVE, the skill development initiative of Tata Trusts that was set up in 2014 to skill the nation’s youth for employment, entrepreneurship and community enterprise. The programme is delivered through STRIVE’s Skill Development Centres (TSSDC) and collaborations with partner organisations.

Since Kiran had already worked at Tata Westside and knew a little about the retail industry, he chose the ‘Retail Sales Associate’ course. New to online classes, he was nevertheless enthralled by the youth development module.

On the path towards success

Soon, Kiran was making giant strides – not just in his studies but also personality-wise. From suffering depressive thoughts of the accident, he was now brimming with optimism. “Initially, it was difficult for me to talk to anyone without snapping,” he says. “But my behaviour changed so gradually as I began internalising the life skills I learnt at STRIVE.” As Kiran’s communication skills became better, his interpersonal skills began to improve as well. “It was easier for me to understand others’ perspectives and deal with them in a calm and composed manner.” Kiran is now confident that he will be successful at any venture he chooses.

Immediately after his final assessment in March 2021, Kiran was placed at Tata Star Bazaar. With a secure career under his belt, Kiran is even more confident about achieving his dreams. From passively accepting whatever life throws at him, he has evolved into planning a better future for himself. “My days of not wanting to meet my neighbours or relatives are long over,” he smiles. “And it is all thanks to STRIVE. The programme does not leave learners midway.  Their job is not finished when we finish our course. I feel like I’m surrounded by friends, I feel supported even now. Even today, I can call up my course instructor, Ms Pooja and ask for guidance. I am sure I’ll receive it. In fact when I needed some documents for a home loan application, the folks at TSSDC Pune helped me.” Kiran’s voice is filled with infectious optimism as he dreams about buying his own house and getting married. His tenacity will surely help him fulfil all his dreams.