The Madrani Watershed Development Fund (WDF) project is being implemented by IGSSS with the support of NABARD in six villages of Jhabua District, Madhya Pradesh. It is a six-year plan and focuses on voluntary community labour or Shramdaan as it is called in Hindi that the community needs to contribute in terms of cash or labour and as a minimum of 16% of the cost of the project measures.
Since IGSSS was already working in this area, it became easy for the team to start the project in these villages as there was strong rapport with the community. In the preparatory phase of community capacity building, the project team successfully mobilised village members for the community Shramdan.
Following activities started with the community to initiate the NABARD watershed plan:
- Focus Group Discussion and Orientation of the project with Village Communities in which 56 people participated and deliberated on preparing strategies and action plans.
- Concept sharing for the WDF Project was done with the community to make their understanding of the project clear. This interaction also helped the community to take ownership of the roles that they will play in the project.
- Selection and Formation of Watershed Management Committee was done in each of the 6 villages. The committee constituted of members from Self-Help Groups, SC / ST community, village women and landless farmers. The Committee also opened a separate bank account to receive funds for watershed projects and use it for the planned activities.
- Exposure Visit to other NABARD Supported Watershed projects was also organised for the selected members and other interested farmers. It proved very useful for the members and helped them to understand the development and management of watershed structures.
- Site selection and Implementation in 6 villages was done in the final stage. People of the village decided to make stone bunds on the ridge of their fields for four days as Shramdaan. 67 families participated and build a stone bund on 18 farms covering 49.230 cubic metres.