Suhas P Wani, Anantha K H, Sreedevi T K Resilient Dryland SystemsInternational Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics Patancheru 502324 Andhra Pradesh, INDIA
Low and erratic rainfall, severe land degradation, low crop yields, and high poverty. WSP…potential engine for agricultural growth and sustainable development in rain-fed areas. Increasing women’s participation is critical to the long-term sustainability of development efforts.
Technology Value addition Market linkages ACTION RESEARCHCAPACITY BUILDING TARGETED ACTIVITIES PARTICIPATIO N Technical know-how LIVELIHOOD Input-output value Value addition chain Market linkages ISSUES/CONSTRAINTS Technology Knowledge Market
Crop intensification with high-value crops and diversification of farming systems. Production of basic staples and surplus for modest incomes. Enhanced participation of the vulnerable groups through capacity-building and networking. Women learned new techniques in planting, land preparation, and intercropping. Planted around 18,500 pongamia trees to augment the oilseed supply in future. Fixed 147 t of carbon thru pongamia plantation and received worth of US$ 670 from World Bank as environmental service payment. From this additional income, they invested in tree nurseries.
Average family incomes increased by 77% thru watershed interventions. Reduced seasonal migration. Employment and income opportunities. Building social capital. Trust, social cohesion, a sound local leadership and democratic functioning of local institutions are among the features of social capital. Girl children are educated in taluk board schools. High social standing in the village for women.
Supporting government policies. Increased bargaining power and financial and political leverage. Solidarity thru mandal-level federation meetings - enables them to share their problems and seek help. The federations can help the SHGs to borrow money from financial institutions at lower interest rates. Loans are particularly useful for value-added services such as running a highway restaurant and other micro- enterprises. The federation takes care of book keeping and training functions of SHGs. The impact in terms of increasing the family incomes, building the social capital as well as trust amongst the women members.
Women have organised themselves and put up their SHGs on fish sauce, soap making, shampoo, fish feed, etc. The small-scale activities of women show the local level resource mobilisation, use and management. IGAs - rabbit farming, goats and cattle development, pig rearing - important for their livelihood security. Improved household welfare - living standard, economic affordability in acquiring household items, children education and health, etc. Increased responsibilities in the household and farming activities. Financially independent and increased household income. Empowerment in terms of knowledge, financial and social status.
Strong and good local leadership. Increased availability of water resources. Targeted income generating activities. Collective action and supporting government policy. Training and capacity building & strengthening. Linkages to the markets. Regular skills up-gradation.
• Watershed projects provided a platform for inclusive market oriented development without jeopardizing social norms.• Need-based targeted income generating activities (IGAs) provided a confidence among women members to increase their social esteem, social standing and decision-making power.
Watershed programmes should look beyond land development activities. Need to make available the technical know-how and make them aware of such technologies through regular skill up-gradation trainings. Enhanced awareness of women’s rights through deliberate efforts is critical for sustainable development of watersheds by harnessing the women power equitably. Need to harness the gender power through harmony in the watersheds. Implementing and coordinating agencies need to take cognizance of resources and policy support to address gender equity.