Stories of change

Pran Singh: Saved by WADI

Pran Singh, a small farmer with only 2.5 acres of land, lives in Busahar village of Shivpuri District in Madhya Pradesh. Successive years of drought and the lack of irrigation sources had made struggling with farm distress a way of life posing as a threat to livelihoods. In 2016, DA enabled Pran to come under the fold of the WADI programme supported by NABARD initated with the idea of providing a holistic approach to address the production, processing and marketting needs of the tribal famrers. Today, Pran Singh is a successful WADI farmer and has been able to come out of his poverty. He now has a steady source of income.

Prem Narayan: A farmer with Hope

Prem Narayan, a resident of Manpura village in Shivpuri district of Madhya Pradesh lives with his wife and a 14 year old son. With 1.5 acres land and managing a single crop, life was not easy for Narayan and his family. Poor productivity of the land further aggravated the struggle for daily survival. Pren Naraan was introduced to vegetable farming. He is now a leader in his village and has rekindled the faith in land amongst his fellow farmers.

Ms. Rekha Wadhva: Being wise with waste

Ms. Rekha Wadhva, a resident of Pitampura (Delhi), is a home maker with a passion for gardening. When the Development Alternatives’ team shared the concept of kitchen waste recycling with the various households in Saraswati Vihar, she was first amongst the 40 households to grab the opportunity to get trained to convert kitchen waste into compost through waste care composters and installed the composter at her home. She has been wise in converting waste into manure.

Suman Rana: A successful entrepreneur, mother and a homemaker

Suman Rana from Pasiyahi Khurd village (Uttar Pradesh) felt the need to start earning because of the increasing cost of living and fewer number of earning members in her family. She enrolled into the TARA Akshar+ programme and her life changed for better.

Vermicompost Enterprise

Asha Devi, a resident of Village Dhannipatti, district Kushi Nagar, Uttar Pradesh. With a desire to supplement her household’s income, she wanted to start her enterprise from her home. After exploring some traditional businesses such as Food Processing and Sewing, but she was not satisfied. And that’s when she approached the W4P team at DA.

Women in Fly Ash Brick Industry

Mikki Devi, former Mukhiya of Madhura South Panchayat in Araria district, was looking for an opportunity to set up an enterprise. One of her tenants, an engineer working with the National Thermal Power Corporation Limited, Kahalgaon (NTPC), encouraged her to set up a fly ash brick manufacturing unit. He shared his knowledge about fly ash manufacturing units with Mikki Devi. She then consulted Abhay Kumar Singh, present Mukhiya of Madhura South Panchayat and he extended his support to establish Bhawani Shankar Fly Ash Bricks.

Mahesh Kumar: When Diligent Work and Training Bring Success

Mahesh Kumar, owing to the poor financial condition of his family, could not pursue higher studies after completing class 12th. He then enrolled at Gurukul Career Academy, Jodhpur, to get trained for a Micro Finance job role...

Story of Emerging Enterpreneurs

Mr. Babulal Khuswaha and Mr. Narendra Khuswaha are locals from the village of Bhundri, near Orchha town (Niwari block, Tikamgarh district, Madhya Pradesh). From the year 2000 to 2006, Mr. Babulal was working as an unskilled labourer in an MCR production unit of TARA Nirman  Kendra; after which he went onto working for an MCR enterprise as a daily wage labourer for about four years...

Dare To Dream

Rajesh was dissatisfied as his teaching jobs left him no time. It was near to impossible for him to get leave during school term and he could not afford to lose the extra wages he earned  from tuitions. This resulted in Rajesh giving a miss to family functions and religious ceremonies. He also found it difficult to fulfill his errands and time for himself was a rare luxury. Nevertheless, he continued with his job to support his wife and two young sons. Then one day, opportunity knocked on his door...

Draupadi of Bhojpura

Twenty years ago, Maheshwari Devi used to accompany her husband to the stone crushing unit where he was employed as a labourer. Since his hours were long, she looked to keep herself busy. She bought some cigarettes, packets of gutkha and rolls of bidi from Jhansi and decided to sell these by the roadside. I bought things worth Rs.50 and was amazed that it all got sold on the same day, -- she remarks. This gave her the first taste of income. Gradually, Maheshwari increased the variety and amount of goods, consequently increasing her income. Conversations with her customers made her realize that she could also run a tea stall...

Guddi Devi Reborn

Guddi, a young lady from Madhya Pradesh, had an inherent talent for bamboo work but wasn’t  aware of it. Times were extremely hard for her family, who relied on manual labour to make ends meet. But life had different plans for her. She stumbled upon a women’s group in the village of Makara and the inquisitive Guddi discovered that the members would be taught to make bamboo items...

TARA Looms

TARA Loom is an ingenious machine that incorporates many advanced features to improve efficiency of the weaver and the quality of the woven fabric with existing levels of operational skills. The manually operated TARA Loom combines versatility with ease of operation. It is ergonomically designed so that it conforms to traditional workmanship to produce better quality fabric. It demonstrates that it is possible to combine high productivity, superior quality of fabric and ease of operation in one machine that can also use different yarns like cotton, wool, silk and synthetic...

Arsenic Free Water For All

Arsenic contamination in the ground waters of the Ganga- Brahmaputra fluvial plains in India and Padma – Meghna fluvial plains in Bangladesh have been reported to be the world’s biggest natural calamity. In India, seven states - West Bengal, Jharkhand, Bihar, flood plains of Uttar Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Imphal rivers and Rajnandgaon village in Chhattisgarh - are believed to be worst affected...

Enhancing Livelihood Opportunities: Puffed Rice

Demonstrations of how to make puffed rice were organized by DA and undertaken by Unnayan for the communities of Chainrakolha and Garta in mid-March 2013; 10 village leaders and members representing both communities attended. Unnayan has supported the MayurbhanjaMahilla (MMA), a registered Women Self Help Group Federation consisting of more than 130 women members from different villages of Mayurbhanj district, in undertaking activities related to the growth of puffed rice as a supplementary livelihood. In addition to this they have developed market linkages to sell the product. The MMA cooperative, buy rice from the members at INR 30/kg and sells it at INR 35/kg at local and regional markets. A single member can earn an additional INR 30,000 to 35,000 per annum in steady income. The group was shown puffed rice processing unit and the preparation process was explained in detail. The puffed rice manufacturers demonstrated how they prepare puffed rice from paddy and identified the materials used for the activity. Members from the MMA further demonstrated how mushrooms could also be cultivated in conjunction with the puffed rice. The visiting members of Chainrakolha and Garta have invited the MMA to their villages to demonstrate the puffed rice techniques in detail and advise them on how to uptake this livelihood.

Where there is a will, there is a way

Two examples of women who were successful in lifting themselves up from a poverty stricken life are presented in this article. Rita and Aarti had signed up for the Life Skills and Vocational Skills Training programme developed by Society for Technology and Action for Rural Advancement (TARA). On completion they started their own micro-enterprises

Ray of Hope - Case Study of a WADI Farmer

The promotion of agro forestry models by Development Alternatives has come as a ray of hope for the Sahariya tribals of Bundelkhand who are striving for nutritional security and adequate livelihoods. The author narrates the story of Atam Ram Sahariya who feels fortunate to have been associated with this programme and tells us about the security it has brought to his family

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