In summer 2010, IDEX Executive Directer, Vini Bhansali visited Sahyog Sansthan in Udaipur, Rajasthan, India. She brought back countless stories of Sahyog's work empowering women through Self-Help Groups and Savings Cooperatives, farm's flourishing with the use of vermi-composting and organic fertilizers, and communities drawn together by a common sense of benefit from water cachement projects and cooperative grazing grounds for their animals. Read her blog entries here.
Sahyog Sansthan's mission is to empower poor and minority communities by getting them involved in ways that respect their needs, capabilities, and let's them lead projects. Self-Help Groups pool savings and determine how the funds will be loaned out and repaid by members. The women involved in these groups feel proud and are determined to send their daughters to school, fostering a next generation of women who are educated and an important part of their communities. Vermi-composting for local farmers creates income off of selling compost, but also increases yields and quality of the food they grow. It teaches their families the importance of self-reliance and that chemical fertilizers (even as they're encouraged to use them by the government) are not healthy for the environment or community. And the use of common lands to graze cattle, goats, and buffalo builds community ties to the land that result in cooperative efforts to plant trees and use perma-culture methods to retain water-shed and ground-water, regenerating natural resources to withstand drought season- benefitting all who use it.
Donations to this project help empower communities in Udaipur, Rajasthan to lead in the development of progressive farming and banking practices that ensure the future of their families. Thank you for your support.