Depending on the nature of natural resources and socio-economic capacities, a multitude of livelihood options are being introduced to help marginalized communities improve incomes. This is also bringing such communities closer to the national goal of Food Security.
Both access to and optimum utilization of water in rainfed areas is bringing considerable economic relief to single crop dependent farmer; with improvements in production and productivity being recorded.
Scientifically planning the utilization of natural resources, while taking due consideration of traditional practices is not only improving livelihoods, but ensuring sustainability of the resource itself.
Climate variability including extreme events is increasing vulnerability across sectors. By adapting to such changes, the risk faced by poor and marginalized communities is being reduced. These risk reduction practices include a combination of traditional practices, as well as scientific developments.
While, issues being taken up under Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) are evolving with time; we are consistently working with communities to ensure that better practices are accepted and adopted by them.
Various institutions have been created under the Panchayati Raj to expedite processes of development. Capacity building is an important approach to enable them to deliver new found roles and responsibilities.
A multitude of technological solutions are being introduced to mitigate the effects of high carbon emission practices. Training para professionals from amongst the local communities to develop and propagate such practices is essential.
An approach to encourage inter regional cooperation is the transfer of technologies. Cost effective technological solutions are contributing to improvement in livelihoods in particular and overall well being in general.
The declining per capita availability of water is increasingly stressing on sustainable approaches to water utilization. Also, constraints in further investing on creation of water related infrastructures are assigning significant weight to operation and maintenance (O&M) of existing ones. Here systems of governance hold integral solutions to improvements in operational efficiency and sustainability.
We recommend the involvement of farmers and village institutions in the management of water (‘Participatory Groundwater Management’ & ‘Participatory Irrigation Management’) resources. Here need based capacity building are part of the support extended. Institutions trained to operate and maintain drinking water supply systems including piped water supply are Village Water and Sanitation Committees (VWSC) and Water User Groups (WUG) etc. Our ‘Hand Pump’ technicians too contribute to O&M including repair of existing drinking water structures and training of para-professionals from the local communities.
Repair, renovation and restoration of existing infrastructure including water bodies too are part of the support extended by us.
While, a lag in achievement of Millennium Development Goals with regard to water and sanitation is well established, scope for improvement is immense. Our approaches are keeping pace with changing issues.
We are addressing the most basic issue of access to sanitation through design and development of sanitation models. Keeping pace with leading innovations in the sanitation sector, we are also collaborating to demonstrate several such models amongst our communities including demonstrations on solid and liquid waste management (Bio Digesters & Bio Gas). Due care is taken in technology selection, so as to ensure that the toilets are not an environmental hazard – especially in flood prone and low lying coastal areas. In water stressed areas, efforts are being made to improve sustainability of structures created through improved access to assured water resources (including rainwater harvesting in schools).
As an established strategy, behavior change is being addressed by us through awareness generation and capacity building of local communities, PRI representatives on improved WASH practices including Menstruation Hygiene Management (MHM) etc.