Thank you all so much for support!
In total, 1,500 women in Bihar, India, benefited from your generous donations by having increased food security that was initiated by the development activities highlighted in this project.
Comments from Annu, Secretary (Executive Director) of Manavi:
“There is a strong demand for education and health – mainly for girl children and adult women. Most of the target community, women and children, are illiterate. As SHG members, [need] to read and write, and calculate money and interest, women are now more eager than before to educate their children, especially their own daughters. Child marriages are a prevailing issue in theses villages. Now these practices are decreasing. Now women are willing to give proper mental and physical care to their children.”
Self-Help Groups and Income Generation: providing women with access to microcredit, help women connect with banks and teach the women financial and management skills.
• 500 women from five villages participated in savings and credit groups; each woman now saves around $1 per month. Regular trainings take place on basic math, bookkeeping, and repayment plans.
• Self Help Groups have leveraged over $4,000 in loans from formal banking institutions in Bihar for dairying and other small businesses.
• 340 women participated in income-generating activities gaining an economic foothold to continue growing their income.
The majority of participants were engaged in dairying and fishing.
o 10 women received honey cultivation training with an estimated $60-$80/year added income
o 50 families received goats to rear, sell and earn an income
o 50 women gained access to and registered for public resources such as pensions, accidental death claims, “first child support,” and savings incentive programs.
o 7 women were able to greatly expand the size of their bangle-making businesses.
Food Security and Sustainable Agriculture: through vegetable gardens, livestock, horticulture, crop diversification and related income-generation activities.
• 100 people participated in and now have access to seed banks in 5 villages.
• 350 women participated in sustainable, organic farming training focusing on the use of natural pest and fertilizing systems.
Other notable trainings included the following:
o 40 vermicompost pits (raising and production of earthworms and their byproducts for waste reduction and fertilizing production) were dug in 5 villages.
o 50 farmers visited agricultural research institutions to learn about the benefits of organic farming
o 6 women participated in intensive train-the-trainers sessions on food processing; they in turn will train approximately 120 women in the same.
Other Activities and Outcomes
• 6-7 health camps per month serving an average of 150 women per camp for pregnant women and women ages 0-5 were provided preventative care and consultation.
• Manavi organized more than 20 village-level meetings where agriculture scientists were invited to share best practices on documentation of sustainable farming practices.
• Participants of Manavi’s village-level meetings included self-help group leaders, members of farmers’ clubs and office bearers of “Jaiv Panchayats” (Living Democracy), a movement initiated by the Research Foundation of Science, Technology and Ecology (RFSTE) that aims to establish a definitive sovereignty of local communities on biodiversity resources.
• In 11 villages Manavi has facilitated the formation of Jaiv Panchayats to bring local farmers together to bring forth issues related to food insecurity and the effects of conventional farming vs. organic farming, among others.