Severe drought and scarcity of water for the last 6 years had affected the community badly in Marathwada region. To overcome the climatic risk and its impact on livelihoods where the community mainly depend on agriculture, SSP and women federation in Tuljapur has developed a long-term partnership with Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK) in Tuljapur.
This is a real life struggle story of poor community for bringing back from zero to recognition and handful of experience in resilience building. Today many women groups and community visit these villages and learn the good initiatives implemented by women farmers and leaders.
For the last 5 years women groups in Osmanabad has developed one of the best partnership in sustainable agriculture related initiatives. Strong leadership from KVK and Women Federation further strengthened and growing into many areas.
Role of KVK and women groups involvement
Now women leaders as farmers are recognised across Maharashtra due to their innovative approach that received from training and learning events from KVK. They are appearing in All India Radio discussion on organic farming methods, providing training other villages organised by KVK, participating in state and national exhibitions and workshops to show case their skills.
The partnership with KVK brought new technologies and knowledge for the community. Dr. Takankhar, Programme Coordinator, KVK has impressed the way women groups are committed and taking part of training initiatives and testing. There are many new information and technologies focussed on integrated farming approach accessed by women groups. Azola, Hydroponic fodder, Kadaknath chicken breed, seed germination test, soil and water test, mulching of land are some of the new area of knowledge acquired by women groups through KVK partnership.
Dr. Sindhulkar, a leading lady from KVK focuses on Dairy technologies. Dr. Sindhulkar mobilised women leaders and provided training on many aspects that improve milk production, nutrition and additional income. She was part of the initiative for introduction of Kadaknath Chicken breed, training on Azola and Hydroponic fodder. She said transferring sustainable practices technology simply to farm field.
Dr. Sindhulkar feels that subsidy should go to women and they utilise it properly. According to her, landholding is high in Osmanabad but resources are less. Due to the efforts by women leaders and their involvement show us that women farmer are capable of showing small but innovative initiatives that could be replicated to many communities.
“Women are always takes feedback and correct it. But in the case of men farmers, you need to push them to do any innovative approaches. They leave the work half way and focus on cash. Women are different; they take care of environment, agriculture like her family”, says Dr. Sindhulkar, KVK Osmanabad.
Innovative techniques and practices should reach out to more communities and women leaders should spread the word thru training and exposure visits.
Due to the partnership with KVK, leaders Vaishali and Archana are promoted to district level Scientific Advisory Committee (SAD). KVK has recognised 15 leaders who can teach other communities in integrated approach in farming. Women leaders stories have been appeared in local TV channels boosted their confidence and recognised by other stakeholders and community.
Partnership with institutions like KVK and other agriculture universities brought women with knowledge and practices and establish a network across Maharashtra.