Hearing about floods and actually experiencing the death and destruction it wreaks are totally different; the PRADAN team realizes this as it struggles to find solutions to counter the devastating effects that the receding waters leave behind for the villagers
Taboos, superstitions, lack of awareness, lack of infrastructure, shame and embarrassment about menstruation are barriers to the confidence, self-esteem and dignity of girls and women, affecting their well-being and health as a consequence
Giving up on traditional food and blindly having ‘development’ agendas in agriculture thrust on them has resulted in the tribals losing their wise and time-tested habits and practices, leading to heavy loss in health and economic terms. Today, they are neither here nor there—neither modern, ‘developed’ and prosperous nor in touch with their own indigenous crop cultivation methods and wholesome food habits
Realizing that there is no single approach to engaging with women in order to organize them into SHGs, the Kishanganj team found success when it was willing to let go of its biases and identified the pressing needs of the women in the Muslim-dominated hamlet, supporting them in the areas of health and nutrition before considering savings and credit
Having been able to assure food security among the villagers and realizing that economic self-sufficiency alone was not going to alleviate the basic problems faced by women, the focus in Jolhakarma is on ensuring pipe water supply and sanitation units within homes to assure them a life of dignity, free from the ordeal of open defecation and the drudgery of getting water for daily use from remote sources
Inspiring and instilling change in the centuries-old habits of villagers by slowly and steadily introducing the women of the SHGs in Purulia to sanitation and hygiene practices is both challenging and rewarding
Focusing on the pivotal role that safe drinking water and sanitation play in the progress of the people in any location, this article discusses the use of sanitary toilets in the context of the Joint Monitoring Programme Report (2012) for Water Supply and Sanitation
Recognizing the importance of sanitation and its criticality in determining the success and failure of the livelihood projects, PRADAN is keen on modelling best practices in the Drinking Water and Sanitation sector that can be replicated by others such as partner NGOs and state governments. This article is a study of the PRADAN experience.