EXTENSION OF Poverty Reduction Project FOCUSING ON WOMEN’S EMPOWERMENT
Year 2012 to 2013 at Mulshi Taluka, Pune District, Maharashtra, India.
The project is in Partnership with ICA Japan and JICA- Japan International Corporation Agency, Japan. ICA India is the implementing agency.
During and after the evaluation of our Poverty Reduction Project implemented during the year 2008- 2011, it was learned that the Existing Management System needs to be strengthened to make the project self running on its own, which means training and journeying the Cooperatives members, committees and beneficiaries in the methods of managing the projects.
Key projects implemented during the 2008-11 were, 20 Bio gas constructed in 4 villages, Lift Irrigation in two villages currently run by two different cooperatives, Milk Dairy run by one cooperative, and agro forestry and tree plantation by all the beneficiaries.
The second learning was that we found less participation of women in all the projects. Therefore, it was decided to empower women through various trainings including soft skills and technical/hard skills, so that they can start income generating businesses and get their status upgraded with the family and village.
Following are the programmes for next two years:
- Empowering women to increase their status in family and village and increase of their participation in village development including decision making.
- Strengthening the Committees and Cooperatives (management system) to carry out projects on their own, moving towards self sustenance.
- Output through training
- Nurture the leadership through monthly meetings and training.
- Activate the exchange program in the community to learn from each other.
- Strengthen the team work among the beneficiaries and leadership.
- Promote Sustainable self development.
- Making women self sufficient through income generating activity.
To serve the purpose of project, the following activities are planned:
- Leadership Development Training – 4 villages – 3 days – 3 times.
- Dairy Management Training – 3 days – 2 times.
- Sustainable Agriculture & Agro forestry Training – 3 days – 2 times.
- Monthly Meetings with Capacity building Training in each village for 2 hours-
- (Khamboli on 5th , Andhale on 10th, Katarkhadak on 15th, & Kemsewadi on 20th.)
- Women’s Empowerment Training – 3 days – 4 times.
- Women’s Business Setup Training, Technical – 1 day -10 times.
- 12 women’s group will be supported to set up business.
- Study Tour - 1 day – 2 times
We believe that the sustainability objective will be met, and that these successful villages will attract many observers.
REPORT OF KHAMBOLI CLUSTER HUMAN DEVELOPMENT PROJECT
In Mulshi Taluka, Pune District, India, during 2008 to 2011.
In PARTNERSHIP with The Institute of Cultural Affairs: India and Japan
Our work was in a cluster of four villages in Mulshi Taluka, Pune district, Maharashtra state of India, with the total population of about 5000. The four remote villages were: Khamboli, Katarkhadak, Andhale, and z.
The project Poverty Reduction through Rural Development and was completed successfully in three years. The project was in Partnership with ICA Japan and JICA - Japan International Corporation Agency.
Main Activities of the projects were:
Sustainable Agriculture, Dairy development, Bio-Gas plants construction (Pilot project), Agro forestry development, Tree plantation and Capacity Building of beneficiaries and village leaders.
Project approach and Methodology is very participatory, in fact, villagers were involved in the project from the beginning for survey and planning. Therefore the implementation process became very easy and effective, and the total project ownership now is of the cooperatives in the villages.
Sustainable Agriculture- two cooperatives were formed, with 160 farmers who are running two irrigation schemes in two villages. 160 acres of land under irrigation is growing multiple crops such as rice, wheat, chickpeas, vegetables, and fodder for animal feed. Organic way of farming is introduced and many farmers have done the practice successfully. Many youth stopped from going to the city for jobs, because project is providing employment opportunity and satisfaction at its own place.
Dairy development- Cooperative of 50 people is running the project, out of which 32 families are providing milk to the dairy. A milk collection center constructed and fully equipped with tools required for a dairy, such as milk cooler, fat testing machine, lactometers, cans for milk collection etc. About 1200 liters of milk is collected and sold daily in the city. A sales counter was opened in the city where few milk products are made and sold, such as lassi, butter milk, curd etc.. Families are purchasing new animals to increase the quantity of milk.
Bio-gas plants- during last three years 20 Bio gas constructed for 20 families in 4 villages as pilot project. Women are very happy with this project because it directly benefits the women. Women says it saves time, no smoke in house, quick cooking process, and gives good fertilizer as its slurry comes out. A few families have attached toilets to the bio gas plants.
Tree plantation- We have maintained a permanent Plant Nursery at our Environment Education Center, at Talegaon Dabhade. Varieties of forest, fruits and medicinal plants are raised and 15,000 plants are distributed to farmers at our project area every year.
Above mentioned 4 projects are supporting each other. The dairy provides cow dung fertilizer to agriculture, and bio gas, agriculture provides fodder for milk animals of dairy, Bio gas provides its slurry as fertilizer, and tree plantation provides fodder /feed as well as fruits, wood etc.
Women’s involvement- Women are encouraged to participate in Training, meetings and implementing projects. Initially their participation was very less like comparing to men; it was ten men to two women, now it has doubled and we do have separate meetings and training for women.
Training- Both the technical and capacity building training was held in village, and residentially at our training center in Talegaon Dabhade. Experts in related fields like agriculture, dairy, bio gas and agrofrestry were invited from the Agriculture college in Pune, from government departments locally, and few private experts.
EDUCATION: Tribal School in Chikhale near Mumbai, built by ICA Japan, has been expanded up to 12 standard. About 600 students are taking education. The Staff are given regular training and guidance of participatory education methods. Nelson Stover is working on Computer education with them.
ToP- TECHNOLOGY OF PARTICIPATION: Our project is based on ICA Principles, therefore ToP is used in community development project. Our Training center is serving a few organizations and we are providing the facility for training programmes. We have been conducting ToP training with Maharashtra Police force, Suguna Poultry Limited- training their employees, so far trained 250 staff, 20 days of programmes this year. Just recently we conducted 2 days training for trainers for JSW Ispat Steel Limited. Shankar Jadhav is invited time to time to facilitate workshops for other state’s programmes. Regular training arranged for our project and office staff.
PEER TO PEER WORK INTERNATIONALLY WITH OTHER COUNTRIES:
ICA Japan is our Major partner for last 20 years in community development, has implemented 2 pilot projects near Pune. We exchange our staff for coordination, training faculty, and arranged study tours etc.
Similarly ICA Australia has been our Mentors and supporters in developing staff for ToP methods and supporting the sustainability of ICA Pune.
ICA Nepal and ICA Bangladesh has been close friends supporting each other in training staff, providing information, moral support as brotherhood to each other.
WHAT ABOUT THE FUTURE OF VILLAGES IN INDIA?
This pilot project has been visited many times, and continues to be attractive. ICA Japan has obtained an extension of this project to focus on women’s advancement. NEC from Japan came in January to discuss putting in high technology hydroponics in one village. All eyes are upon these four villages to take their ways across India, and around the world!