Focusing towards improving the quality of life of poor and marginalized people living in rural areas lies at the core of its over-all mission. Responding to this, initial step was taken to organize these people in their groups to institutionalize their efforts. In all, 10 farmer clubs were organized with membership 300 small and marginalized farmers in Tetariya block of East Champaran district. These group members are capacitated to go with the various agriculture based interventions in an organized manner on mutual support basis. As their collective initiative, one farmer resource centre could be established with the facility of small agriculture implements and technical support.
Scanty Percolation of technologies and improved agricultural practices was identified as one of the major challenges to be addressed upon in the area. JNK, in support with Tata Trusts under agriculture project started in April 2012, field trials and piloting of technologies and improved agriculture practices (SRI, SSP, zero-tillage, coco-peat nurseries etc.) was made in a land area of 1384 acres during last 3 years. A context specific package of agriculture practices (PoPs) has been devised on the basis of results from these demonstrations and in consultation with agriculture scientists and experts. 500 demonstrations on recycling of organic wastes and green manuring by 1055 farmers in an area of 922.6 acres were organized under soil health improvement initiatives. All this could reduce the cost of cultivation and enhance crop productivity of above small farmers in Maniyarpur village. During 2014-15, coco-peat technology was used by 130 farmers for developing nursery of tomato and pumpkin as high value crop to cover an area of 1000 acres.
Under its goat based livelihood intervention, induction of 200 quality goats was made involving 200 poor farming families. Improved goat rearing practices to reduce mortality and improve body weight were introduced through Pashu Sakhi approach.
The entire venture has been quite useful and provided significant learnings particularly for strengthening agriculture based livelihoods. The case studies and facts sheets were documented to share these learnings with other development players.
In addition to above, health promotion activities were also carried out with particular focus on reproductive child health approach. The chief executive of the organization has been associated with UNICEF to promote child health activities. Participation in water and sanitation programme was also made. Health is the major concern for the destitutes in this area.
ABOUT THE AREA
Tetariya block in East Champaran in Bihar is located in the south-eastern corner of east Champaran district. The region has highly fertile alluvial soil. The ground water is plentiful but number of borings and pumps are a bottleneck. The region is dominated by poor and marginalized households; about 60% of the population belongs to Schedule caste. The area is characterized by very small sized holdings. Substantial number of landless; however a tradition of land leasing and share cropping is quite common in the region. Animal husbandry is an important source of livelihoods of the people.
The region has a two-agriculture cropping seasons (rabi and kharif). The main rabi crop is paddy and the average crop yield is 15 quintal per acre. Wheat is the main crop during the kharif season and its average crop yield is 17 quintal per acre. On a small scale, pulses are also cultivated. There are plenty of trees, particularly mango, palm, sheesham, bamboo, etc.
The landholding pattern of the region is estimated that approximately 35% of the households are landless, 24% have >0 to 0.5 acre, 23% have >0.5 to 1 acre, 10% have >1 to 2 acres, 8% have >2to 5 acres, 47% of the households have 1 acre or less and 18% have over 1 acre of land. As to livestock rearing based on the survey, 55% of households own cattle, 59% have goat. Farmyard poultry is done by about 15% of the households. Cow dung is not the main source of fuel, wood is the main source for family fuel consumption.
The initiatives taken by JNK to strengthen agriculture based livelihood has started creating impact at this initial stage but the withdrawl of Tata Trusts’ support would impact sustainability and low upscaling as conceived by the organization. It needs technical and financial support as well for at least additional 3 years to sustain techno-managerial focused development seeking behaviour among the farmers. Upscaling with minimum 1000 small farming households would be required to create large impact in the area while thinking about high value crop promotion. Dearth of resources and poor affordability of technologies (equipments/implements & vital inputs) remains at the crux which require collective action and external support. The key social issues of education and health have significance to these poor families and need support to mitigate vulnerabilities. Mal-nutrition among children and women is common which would require alternatives appropriate to farmers through easy access within their resources. Access to education facilities through school enrolment of children from these families including mainstreaming of dropped outs has been perceived to be another crucial issue in this area. These are very specific issues which JNK finds to be taken up in response to its set organizational objectives.
Keeping in view the existing situation of area, the provision made under Companies (CSR Policy) Rules, 2014 may contribute to improve it with the generous support from your establishment. It would help to supplement with the endeavours at this crucial stage to arrive at some fruitful conclusion. Areas of collaboration include technical and financial support for improvement in agriculture, health and education to JNK on the terms and condition mutually agreed upon. It would, in turn, facilitate penetration of your CSR objectives in rural area of Bihar. A detail agenda for partnership may be decided to proceed further towards selected areas of action having rationale with the policies of both the partners. It needs frequent discussions, contemplation, response and decision to arrive at the extent possible for partnership.
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Our Projects :
Revival of agriculture based Livelihoods
Women Empowerment through Self Help Group
Forward with constructive results in the field of education and sanitation in these areas will be collective efforts to build a new dimension.
Where We Work:
District: East Champaran & Muzaffarpur (Bihar)
Grameen Development Services , Lucknow, Jamsedji Tata Trust, Mumbai & DEF , New Delhi
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