If you teach a woman to fish, she'll be able to feed herself, but if you give her the money to buy her own tackle, she'll catch the kind of fish best suited to the fishing conditions and her own abilities. We've already trained women's self-help groups ("sangams") to use sustainable organic farming techniques to increase their land's yield. Now we need to help them recover from the COVID's economic devastation by empowering them to choose the next steps to restore their farms' viability.
The initial lockdown in India made it almost impossible for women to harvest and sell that season's crops, leaving them in a deep financial hole that makes it hard for them to make payments on farm loans and to purchase supplies for future plantings. With businesses and individuals still struggling, and interstate transport still problematic, marketing their produce has become a daunting challenge. Women farmers are at serious risk of losing everything.
Recent research has proven that giving cash grants to allow participants to solve their own problems is one of the most efficient and effective ways of providing aid. Working with self-help groups has long been a cornerstone of our theory of change, and this project will empower 4 women's sangams to decide how best to spend the $1000 each sangam will receive: to meet individual needs, for supplies or loan repayments; or as a collective, to purchase equipment or start a business.
Used by the women individually, the grants will allow them to transform their farms into thriving enterprises. When a sangam uses the money collectively, they will infuse their group with a resource that will yield benefits for years to come. Either way, it will generate additional income that the women can use to pay for their children's education, health care and other critical expenses. This will, in turn, through the multiplier effect, fuel economic recovery for the entire community.
Give the gift of stability in a time of instability. Set up an automatic, monthly gift now and get matched at 100%—because the COVID-19 pandemic has hurt us all, and it will take all of us to overcome it. Terms and conditions apply.
Monthly giving is as easy, safe, and as inexpensive as a Netflix subscription. Start a monthly donation to VOICE Trust today and get matched at 100%. Terms and conditions apply.