Since 2001, PRASAD Chikitsa has been implementing meaningful and effective, Sustainable Community Development Programs in India’s Tansa Valley, working with the community members to assess their needs and create sustainable projects that improve the quality of their lives. Initiatives include agricultural, environmental and education projects, and about 229 Self-Help Groups (SHGs).
Self-Help Groups (SHGs)
People can accomplish far more if they work together than if they work alone. With this in mind, PRASAD Chikitsa helps people in the Tansa Valley form Self-Help Groups. With 10-20 members each, they are small enough to be self-managed and large enough to make a difference. At a basic level, SHGs are micro-banks; they aid members during emergencies and they invest in the income-generating activities of their members. At another level, they give members an organized forum to improve the quality of their own lives and the lives of those around them. Learn More…
In India, many circumstances thwart the farmers of smallholdings – inability to get financing, the high cost of supplies, poor irrigation and lack of transportation to get crops to market before they spoil.
PRASAD Chikitsa helps farmers to form clubs, and educates them on a range of issues, including how to increase crop output, conserve water, and implement year-round farming techniques. The Tansa Valley now has five PRASAD Farmers Clubs, with a combined membership of 212 men and women. Learn More…
Tree Planting, Orchard Project and Second Crop Initiative
In 2007, PRASAD Chikitsa Self-Help Groups (SHGs) took the lead in implementing a tree-planting program in the Tansa Valley. So far, SHGs have planted thousands of trees around villages and schools throughout the region. The trees they have planted are helping to restore the environment. In the case of fruit trees, they also provide food and a cash crop.
Orchard (WADI) Project and Second Crop Initiative
With PRASAD Chikitsa’s support, farmers in the Tansa Valley have planted mango and chikku trees – popular fruits that are easy to sell. Amidst the trees, they also are planting cash crops such as colorful marigolds or chamomiles, and vegetables such as spinach, beans, cucumbers, peppers and squash. It takes five to seven years for the fruit trees to become productive and profitable; in the meantime these second crops provide both additional food and income. PRASAD Chikitsa plans to expand the project to more farmers in the next year.
PRASAD Chikitsa is opening new doors of opportunity for the young people of the Tansa Valley through the Primary School, Scholarship, Career Guidance and Arts and Crafts education programs. Learn More…
Water and Soil Conservation initiative:
PRASAD’s Water and Soil Conservation initiative targets better water management by equipping villagers to combat soil erosion and keep drinking wells pure. Villagers and Women’s Self-Help Groups, like Ghotogon’s, are helped to make dams; restore bunds or embankments to prevent runoff; remove waste and silt from wells and keep surrounds clean. Organic farming reduces the pollution of ground and surface water.
Most farmers depend on monsoon rain for their crop production, usually rice. In the non-monsoon season they lack water to irrigate crops, which means many farms are productive for only half the year, and half as productive as they could be.
In December 2015- January 2016 PRASAD excavated 4 small wells (about 10-12 feet deep) in Nandani and Koshimshet to store rain water for irrigation. Excavation sites were chosen after careful study of the topography and ground water levels.
PRASAD staff also visit successful innovative local farmers, such as Anil Patil at Sanga village, Tal – Wada to learn from their experience with tools, irrigation systems, nurseries and different cultivation methods.