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Children of the Chinar Season 2, Special series on young achievers of Kashmir, 'Sunny Smiles Bakes'

This is the final story of Season 2 of Children of the Chinar which celebrates young achievers from Kashmir. This one is about the young baker Syed Mehtab Munir and her cool Sunny Smiles Bakes bakery.

The 'Kashmir cake' by Sunny Smiles Bakes.

This story is about a young woman who has turned her passion for home baking into a successful business, Sunny Smiles Bakes. With a background in engineering, Syed Mehtab Munir has pursued baking as her career.

Many young women in Kashmir are establishing successful businesses using their skills. Despite the obstacles and challenges of traditional social structure, political unrest and unemployment, women from Kashmir have significantly contributed to the field of sports, politics, education, arts, and technology. There has also been an increase in female entrepreneurs.

Meet Syed Mehtab, a 27-year-old engineer from the Srinagar neighborhood of Umar Heer Bijhpora, having a degree in engineering she chose to pursue baking as a career

since she has always loved baking cakes using various recipes, designs and flavors.

After finishing her engineering studies, Syed Mehtab found it difficult to pursue a career in baking, but with self-confidence and interest, she was able to gain her parents' support. She completed a regular baking training course from Delhi to further develop her baking skills and gain expertise. Unfortunately, she experienced numerous obstacles in launching her business due to the covid regulations. However, she was able to overcome all difficulties. Syed Mehtab now receives requests for cakes of all flavors and patterns on a regular basis, not just from Srinagar but also from other cities as well.

The cakes baked are one-of-a-kind in terms of taste, design and texture. She began her business two years ago in a small room in her home, but now has her factory in the city's Hawal neighborhood. She also employs other local girls. Syed Mehtab’s factory does not compromise on product quality.

Syed Mehtab receives many requests for cakes for birthdays, weddings, and other special events, but customers also enjoy her delicious cakes and sweets on regular days as well.

She hopes to grow her business in the future.

In Jammu and Kashmir, especially in the Kashmir Valley, girls are making advancements in every aspect of life. Girls used to receive less attention than boys in terms of education and skill development, but this is no longer the case. This way of thinking has evolved as a result of females' outstanding and notable performances in every area of life. Parents today regard girls on a level with boys and give them all the support they need to succeed in any endeavor. Syed Mehtab Munir has flourished as an entrepreneur in this situation, and she is also serving as an example for other women.

Meanwhile, the government is also assisting women entrepreneurs and other women who want to start their businesses through Mission Youth. During the current fiscal year, Mission Youth hopes to reach out to 2,000 women entrepreneurs in Jammu & Kashmir.

Mission Youth has allotted 12 crore rupee ($9 million) of government funding for this scheme for the current fiscal year. The initiative has the distinction of being the first of its kind in which financial aid would be distributed interest-free. This is done expressly to ensure that the businesses started by these young women become viable and profitable businesses.

The many government programmes such as Hausla,Umeed, Tejaswani, and others, as well as self-help groups, have greatly improved the lives of women in Kashmir. On the other side, several women have recently established their own businesses serving as role models and becoming a source of inspiration for other women.

The emergence of women as business owners has significantly improved their lives. They are now earning and becoming self-sufficient in a society like Kashmir which is highly patriarchal. Women are emerging as significant drivers of the economy.

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