SUDHA’s 9 Key Areas
1. Knowledge Enrichment
‘Knowledge is power’ and SUDHA aims to spread the light of knowledge to the masses by its various extension programmes. Knowledge about environment, health and sanitation, water conservation and other need-based areas of interest has been spread by the organisation from time to time. SUDHA fosters documentation and dissemination of Indigenous Technical Knowledge (ITK) for building up the regional knowledge through resource dynamics. SUDHA sieves through the wealth of information to develop need-based literature in an easy-to-understand format for dissemination to the rural masses.
The organisation also envisages to set-up cluster level ‘Village Information Kiosks’ (VIKs) using modern technologies such as Internet to disseminate information on market trends and prices, developments in the fields of agriculture, horticulture, etc.
2. Capacity Building
The organization believes that the capacities of the people, especially women who are a major workforce, be developed and groomed into self-confident individuals to undertake entrepreneurial ventures both as individuals and as groups. To achieve this end, SUDHA has a dedicated team of trainers/facilitators who organise capacity building, training and awareness programmes in the region from time to time, with a view to reduce out-migration of the village communities and consequent abandonment of the land holdings. In this direction on behalf of Entrepreneurship Development Institute of India (EDII), SUDHA has been appointed as Nodal Agency in Uttaranchal for promoting and organizing ‘Open Learning Programme on Business Entrepreneurship’ which is especially designed to develop entrepreneurial traits and motivation in the learner along with the spirit of enterprise, to augment their decision-making capabilities, to set up their individual business venture as well as develop the expertise to manage an enterprise. National Science and Technology Entrepreneurship Development Board (NSTEDB), Dept. of Science and Technology, GOI and National Entrepreneurship Development Board, Dept. of SSI & ARI, GOI supports the course.
SUDHA is persistently making efforts towards developing a cadre of Para-Technicians as facilitators for enhancing the capacities of the hill-people in order to advance their social and economic status by proper management, utilization and conservation of available resources.
3. Venues for Sustainable Livelihood
While livelihood is an overshadowing issue, environment too has a great significance in our daily lives. Thus, the livelihood activities in the rural areas need to be ecologically sustainable too to make them viable on a long-term basis especially in view of the limited agricultural land. SUDHA is encouraging the processing of the local produce so that more income is generated from the same quantity by value addition to it. The organization focuses on building the strengths of local masses both as individuals and in groups/federations, so as to motivate them to undertake off/on-farm micro-entrepreneurial activities for generating alternative sources of income towards achieving self-sustainability.
The organisation contemplates to promote a self-sustaining alternative marketing and distribution system that would ensure better returns to the farmers. For the same the organization runs an outlet ‘Agri~Hub’ which is an endeavor of SUDHA through its consortium with Partner NGOs for providing better marketing facilities/linkages for SHGs produce.
4. Transfer of Contemporary Technologies
No invention or innovation has a meaning unless it is put to good use. SUDHA is striving to bring the relevant technologies viz. water management technologies such as low-cost rainwater harvesting tanks, polythene storage tanks, protected cultivation through polyhouse/polytunnels, bio-composting measures etc. to the field and link the farmers to the research institutions of the region so that they can benefit from their experiences.
Uttaranchal government has declared Uttaranchal as an “Organic State”, and the organisation is playing its part in transferring latest organic preparation technologies to farmers like bio-fertilizer production, bio-formulations, bio-crop management, organic farming and post-harvest management etc.
5. Women and Child Development
Women are the major workforces in the hills and their contribution to the economy and household often goes unnoticed and unrecognized. The organisation focuses on socio-economic upliftment and development of women by ensuring their participation in development process. The organization strongly believes that children are powerful agents of knowledge. Hence SUDHA augments the capacity of children at grass root by providing them an open arena to share their views and learn new ideas as well as built up and strengthen networking of children for increasing their knowledgebase.
One major intervention of SUDHA in this concern is collaboration with Shri Bhuwneshwari Mahila Ashram (SBMA), Dehradun to form Mountain Children’s Forum Chapter at Almora, which is a platform for children where they learn about their rights, culture, environment protection, biodiversity conservation etc. to cultivate their knowledgebase.
6. Health and Sanitation
SUDHA is involved in rendering voluntary services for community health such as conducting immunization campaigns for children. Through Health and Sanitation Campaigns the organization sensitizes the community at grassroot on important aspects of health & hygiene, birth registration, family planning, female foeticide elimination etc. The organisation also recognizes and addresses the health and nutrition needs of women and children of the region.
7. Strengthening of Community Based Institutions
SUDHA believes that the existing village level institutions have contributed much in empowering the rural masses, such as Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs), Van Panchayats (VPs), Mahila Mangal Dals (MMDs), Yuvak Magal Dals (YMDs), etc., should be strengthened and streamlined with the needs of the times. The organisation is actively involved in formation of Self-Help Groups (SHGs), Women Self Help Groups (WSHGs), Farmer Interest Groups (FIGs), Farmer Federations (FFs) etc., and their capacity building as well as skill upgradation. The organisation also aids these groups in getting financial assistance under various government schemes and financial institutions.
8. Planning and Management of Natural Resources and Conservation
SUDHA moves to optimise the utilisation of natural resources by the use of resource planning and management mechanisms. SUDHA recognises the importance of environment protection and biodiversity conservation, and rears it through people’s oriented/people’s centred/people’s programmes. The organisation undertakes afforestation, restoration of natural water resources and awareness generation programmes/campaigns to ensure the active involvement of rural masses and inculcate in them eco-friendly attitudes.
9. Socio-economic Research and Policy Advocacy
SUDHA covets to better understand the needs of the people by conducting socio-economic researches/studies, agro-ecological situational based analysis to develop plans and strategies encompassing a bottom-up approach to address the most emerging issues of the region. The organisation provides a channel of communicating the needs of the region to the policy-making bodies at block, district and state levels to beget necessary changes in the government’s perspective.