Laying the foundation for collaborative action

Today, India is home to about 120 million adolescent girls, an astounding number of whom
are still restrained by poor nutrition and health, lack of complete and quality education,
early marriage, early and repeat pregnancies, little agency and a compromised potential.
If this picture does not change drastically, India will miss out on the unique opportunity
of leveraging its greatest advantage globally – its demographic dividend. This means that
the country needs to act urgently, comprehensively and at scale to meaningfully include
adolescent girls in its growth narrative.

Needless to say, such a complex and ambitious agenda cannot be addressed alone. It needs
urgent and formal collaboration between stakeholders, spanning business, government and
civil society. However, bringing about such collaboration is no easy task, and agreeing to
work together is no guarantee of success. Highlighting the significance of a collaborative
approach to address the issues surrounding India’s adolescents, this report goes a step
further to share actionable insights on designing and facilitating a large-scale multistakeholder
collaborative, leveraging Dasra’s experience of laying the foundation for 10to19:
Dasra Adolescents Collaborative, with key funders and non-profit partners.

This is not a recipe book – each collaborative will have its own unique agenda and dynamics
required to leverage the strengths of each stakeholder and ensure effective, collaborative
action. Instead, the report outlines the building blocks that should be considered during
the formative stages of a collaborative. It is particularly addressed to anyone responsible
for conceptualizing, leading or facilitating a large-scale multi-stakeholder collaborative,
but will be equally useful for those funding or implementing within a collaborative, as well
as for those who are still at the stage of exploring models and contemplating whether a
collaborative is the best way forward.