A sustainable development initiative
Established in 2012, Manini aims to break the cycle of poverty by its focus on sustainable development through livelihood intervention among poor urban women.
Why the focus on women?
Research shows that children families and communities benefit the most when the skills, education and income of women improves.
Nagpur, located in central India in the state of Maharashtra is a city of about 3 million,40% of which lives in slums. Being centrally located, it generates economic opportunities and brings in migrants from Madhya Pradesh, Chattisgarh and Andra Pradesh.
The poor from neighbouring states migrate to the city in search of alternative livelihood and most of them end up living in unhealthy slums. Nagpur city has 446 slums (2008) which often lack basic facilities. Most of the slum population lives in temporary structures.
According to the survey conducted by CHF International (2008) 53% of the adult males in slums are daily labourers, 18% are vegetable vendors, 16% are rickshaw pullers or auto drivers. Sixty five per cent of women are house wives, 16% domestic workers, 15% daily labourers and 4 % of them hold private jobs. The average income of the family is Rs.2000 to Rs.4000/-($36-$72).
Poverty follows wherever the rural poor migrate. The lack of income and lack of space forces them to live in unsanitary and unhealthy environments. They suffer from poor sanitation, inadequate access to clean water, lack health facilities and adequate housing. Unemployment and substance abuse tend to promote anti- social activities. Gender inequailty has led to imbalance in relationships and consequently the poor status of women in the communities. Poverty has severe impact on women.
The International Institute for Populations sciences, Mumbai (IIPS) mentions in the National Family Health Survey (NFHS -3, 2005-06) that 55% of the women in Nagpur slums have very low educational levels. Forty five per cent of them are under nourished. Four out of ten women are anaemic. It also points out the high prevalence of spousal violence in Nagpur slums.
The project is be located at, Bandewadi in Lakadganj zone and Gittikhadan of Dharampeth zone of Nagpur city. The project area in Bandewadi includes Tulsinagar and in Gittikhadan, the Mangarodi, Gond, Wadar and Vishwas Nagar communities. There are around 500 households in the project areas.
The direct beneficiaries will be 45 women from 45 families in the project areas. Special focus also will be given on women living with HIV/AIDS.
What is the project?
Strategies and activities
Increased self and social awareness
• Motivational and sensitization meetings – A total of six motivational and sensitization meetings will be organized. The meetings will give a platform for the poor women understand the need to empower themselves for the sustainable development of themselves and their families.
• Formation and promotion of self help groups of poor women in the target communities. The SHGs have required rules and regulations drafted and approved by the members. They maintain all the documents and registers as required by a SHG. Each member contributes a fixed amount to the SHG savings fund which is collectively deposited in their bank account.
• When it seems appropriate to the members, they will begin internal lending with a rate of minimum interest fixed by the members which will go to the SHG savings account.
• SHG will be also platform for the members to discuss and try to find solutions concerning social, economic and health issues in their families and neighborhoods with the support of available mechanisms collectively
• Training in SHG. The training programs will give the members deeper understanding of the SHGs and its role in their development.
• Training in entrepreneurship –. The training will help the SHG members in understanding the basic dynamics of business, market, customers, linkages and skills required.
• Training in tailoring and embroidery – Six month training in tailoring and embroidery has been organized in Tulsinagar and Gittikhadan. Instructors were appointed in both the centers to train the women in tailoring and embroidery and continue providing technical support to the women after the scheduled training. The training takes place six days a week for six months duration.
Promotion of livelihood interventions
• Tailoring units in Gittikhadan and Tulsinagar – Fully equipped tailoring units have been set up for two groups after the training in both the centers in collaboration with agencies who supply clothing to the hospitals and companies who will give sewing jobs to the women trained either at the centers or in their homes. The trained women will be encouraged to take up local work independently too. Once they gain expertise in tailoring in a span of one year, it is expected that each trained woman will earn a minimum of Rs.4000/- a month. A certain percentage of the profit will go to the SHGs’ savings account. The tailoring machines will be the property of the women members.
• Clothes and imitation jewelry store – A clothes and imitation jewelry store will set for the third group of women. A store will be acquired on rent. The members of the group will take turns to work in the store. There will be daily monitoring of the stock and financial matters by the office bearers of the group.
The profit from the sale will be shared by the members and a certain fixed percentage of the profit will go to the groups’ savings account. The group members will also take up sale of clothes and imitation jewelry on commission basis
A certain percentage of the profit from this activity too will go to the SHGs’ savings account. The members of the SHG are expected to earn a minimum of Rs. 4000/- a month once the business is established.
Father Harry modelling some pajamas.
The trained women will be encouraged to take up local work independently too.
The women and children supported by the Manini Project.
What are the benefits?
Building their capacity and skills and promotion of livelihood activities in womem will boost the economic support to their families, improve the quality of living and ensure proper nutrition and education of their children. It will bring about sustainable progress in their participation and status in the society.
How will we know it is achieving results?
Three SHGs fully functional and the members will be able to assess and articulate better their issues, problems and needs resulting in their gradual empowerment
All the women belonging to the groups will have a fair understanding of the concept, functioning and dynamics involved in SHG that will bring in their active participation
Eighty per cent of the members will have good understanding of their trade, market and customer needs. They will have gained required skills to maintain their trade
Thirty poor women will have learned the trade of tailoring and embroidery and ninety per cent of them will be working in the tailoring units/attached to the units
Eighty percent of the targeted poor women will be able to contribute a minimum of Rs.4000/- a month to their family income after the trades have been established
Increased standard of living among eighty per cent of the families of targeted poor women.
Dare2Dream’s Executive Committee receives regular reports on the progress of the project with a formal report received six monthly. On- going funding is subject to our committee being satisfied that measurable progress is being made towards the stated outcomes.
Dare2Dream Committee members have visited the project twice since its inception and have met with staff and the women participating.