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  project name ~ JMS Self Reliance and Aadarsha Store

category ~ Community Empowerment




  Project Name


JMS Self Reliance and Aadarsha Store



AID IndiaNavnirman Trust



Community Empowerment







  Budget Approved


Rs 667500


  Year Approved







1   2   3   4   5   6  

  Chapter Coordinators


Archana Iyer
Ravi Devarasetty


Penn State





The new JMS headquarters in the space donated by one of the Sanghas. The plot of land was given to the dalit community by the govt. for building the Ambedkar Bhavan. (Photos by Anand Narasimhamurthy of Penn State)





This project is a continuation of the efforts by Navnirman Trust (erstwhile Vimukti) to help Jagrutha Mahila Sanghatan (JMS) come to the forefront of the community development efforts started by Navnirman ~6 years ago.

AID Penn State has supported the projects by Navnirman (Vimukti) since 2001. In order to develop a long term collaboration with AID-India, Vamsi Veeramachaneni, a volunteer from AID-Bangalore will frequently visit Navnirman trust. Vamsi who is an ex-AID-Penn State volunteer has been involved in the review of Vimukti projects since the beginning. Vamsi will try to find areas where various AID-India programs can be implemented in the work are of Navnirman. He will also try to provide help to Navnirman in implementing this project with the help of AID-Bangalore volunteers. He will also try to help Navnirman to market JMS products through the "folk mart" set up by AID-India.

The various alternative/supplemental livelihood schemes of the JMS are going on pretty well. This proposal has 2 more livelihood generatioin schemes.

The proposal is in 3 parts.
1> Aadarsha store: Community food distribution schemes: The sangha members will be given identity cards. The Sangha will buy essential commodities like rice/daal etc. at wholesale rates and sell it to Sangha members at subsidised rates. They will charge only ~5% mark up to recover the cost of operation. The scheme will be managed by 5 sanchalakis. No credit will be issued. At the beginning no perishable items such as vegetables etc. will be sold. The store will be named "Aadarsha store". The aim is to help sangha members save on essential commodities. The govt. run public distribution scheme is broked due to corruption and the landless laborers are exploited by shop keepers by charging them exorbitant prices for essential goods. The 5 sanchalakis will be remunerated for their duties

Part 2> Two new livelihood generation schemes have been proposed. First one is livestock development. Small loans will be given to Sangha members to purchase livestock. The loans will be recovered over a period of 2 years. A small interest will be charged. The interest will be used to develop an emergency medical assistance fund. Sangha women felt a need for such a fund. The program has already been tried out and the women felt that it really helped them.

The other activity is developing vermicompost pits. After the success of the neem fertilizer and bio-pesticide project, Chiguru (the Sangha enterprise) started getting inquiries about whether they also sold vermicompost. So they have decided to start that project too. Chiguru will help farmers train and build the vermicompost pits. Farmers will pay 50% of the cost of construction back over 2 years. This will also be utilized to build the medical emergency fund.

Part 3> Fellowships for full-time activists of Navnirman. Navnirman activists have each developed their own areas of expertise and now they want to expand the scope of mobilization to a wider area. They also want to try some pilot schemes about organic agriculture, watershed management etc. Individual fellowships will enable them to freely conduct these projects and improve the program. This will also help build long term collaboration between AID and Navnirman.





Last updated on 02/27/06 The JMS is now running its affairs confidently and independently. Each of the livelihood generation units is managed by 2 sangha women who are incharge of finances etc for the unit. Navnirman activists are now playing an advisory role to the Sangha women and trying to expand the scope of mobilization to a wider area. They are also implementing some new pilot projects.





The primary goals of this project are 1>To start a community food distribution scheme, partly modeled on the govt. run public distribution scheme for the Sangha members 2>To start 2 new supplemental livelihood schemes: a>Livestock development b>Vermicompost pits 3>Fellowships to full-time Navnirman activists to enable them to increase the scope of work.



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