Ms.Arpita Macwan,Executive – Partnership Management,Vadodara
Gwalior, Madhya Pradesh: IGSSS along with partner organisation GCSS and VAMA conducted the workshop.The purpose was to encourage the rural marginalised community to access social entitlements and also to adopt alternative livelihood opportunities to enhance their income.
During the sessions, the importance of working in groups such as Self Help Groups (SHGs) and Kisan Groups were discussed.It was shared that such collectivisation effort strengthens the community to implement village development plans.Further,the SHGs and Kisan Clubs can also be linked with financial institutions such as NABARD from wherein they can avail loans and initiate income generation activities.
With regard to livelihood practices,the marginal farmers were encouraged to cultivate drumsticks as they grow fast and there is also good demand for the produce in the market specially in southern states and also in metropolitan cities.The landless farmers were encouraged to set up income generating avenues through availing loans from the Madhya Pradesh Society for Rural Livelihood Promotion (MRLP)schemes.
In a separate session, the participants were informed about the various progressive schemes such as Ladli Laxmi Yojna, Kishori Balika Diwas in Anganwadis, Mangal Diwas, Gaon Ki Beti, Pratibha Kiran, Vasati Grah for working women, Tejaswini Rural Women Empowerment Programme and Mamatva Mela which has been playing a strong role towards empowering the marginalised rural women of the state and the participants were informed about how to avail these schemes.
The final session focused on the importance of Right to Information (RTI) Act.It was shared with the community that they can invoke RTI to know about the implementation status with regard to government schemes and they will also be able to enquire about fund utilization with regard to respective schemes.The community was encouraged to use RTI as an effective advocacy tool towards availing their entitlements.
The meeting ended with the community requesting for a training on Drumstick cultivation and it was assured by the IGSSS team members that it will be conducted in the coming months.