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Thematic Area

 

Livelihood Promotion through Agri Business

One of the core practice areas of HARC is promoting and sustaining rural livelihood for the local poor through agri and agri allied activities. HARC has developed and diversified the livelihood scale according to the needs of people and availability of resources in the region. HARC provides technical support for high quality agricultural production and business development services to local people for the promotion of agri-based enterprise.

These interventions are being carried out by forming and strengthening community based institutions and their federations in rural areas. The collective approach has also helped in creating a niche in the local and national market for agri and agri-based products of hill-region.

Promoting Good Governance

HARC's concept of promoting good governance is, that the institutions formed under constitutional act (institutions for  local self-governance) should be strengthen in such a way that they act as strong, active and effective institutions of local development and provide a platform to citizens for articulating their voices, concerns, priorities, problems and issues, which are directly and indirectly affecting their life. This means, promoting transparency, responsibility and accountability among this institution by increasing the leadership qualities, awareness, knowledge and functional skills of elected representatives as well as of common villagers. Under this theme HARC is working for strengthening Panchyati Raj Institutions in rural areas and urban local bodies in urban areas.

With its firm belief on collective approach to socio-economic development, HARC took initiative to organize farming communities into self help groups, farmers’ self help groups, farmer associations, cooperatives and producer’s company and strengthening them.

 HARC has applied two-pronged strategy for strengthening these institutions. In one strategy, HARC has promoted new processes and activities of socio-economic development in already existing community-based institutions formed by HARC in past. The second strategy particularly emphasized strengthening of those groups, which are formed under various government schemes but have become inactive after the withdrawal of scheme or program from the area.

 The technical interventions and promotion of rural technology in agriculture production and value addition has contributed in enhancing the income of rural poor in the region. As a result of these interventions and institution strengthening processes, families associated with village level groups and federations are working collectively and earning income by investing their savings in farm and non-farm business activities. Special focus was given on enhancing the skills and capacities of producers in marketing and procurement management, which is resulting into establishing good market linkages. As a result, growers are able to supply their agri produce and value added products to various wholesale and local market and getting fair prices of their produce.

Gender mainstreaming at institutional as well as programmatic level is the policy of HARC. It believes that women and men have rights to be equally benefited with the process and from results of any development programme and action. HARC adopts special strategies and approaches for women to increase their confidence, leadership, knowledge, skills, their access to financial opportunities, technology, income generation options, and decision making.

 An impact assessment study was conducted by HARC on the socio-economic status of women revealed that being into groups and cooperative have provided women immense opportunities to enhance their leadership qualities, production management skills, negotiation and decision making power at family and community level. Women’s access to loan and knowledge of the schemes, rules, regulations and other procedures of the banking system has increased their confidence

HARC is also engaged in networking and liasoning with government and other institutions for raising women issues. At the time of formulation of National Policy on Women, HARC along with other development organizations, presented key recommendations related to the needs and priorities of hill women. As a participant to the fourth international conference on women held at Beijing in 1995, the issues presented by HARC were a summation of views of thousands of women from Uttarakhand. A year later, HARC collaborated in a review of the steps taken by the government to implement its commitment to promote women's development under the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action. HARC, in collaboration with National Commission for Women, organized the Public hearing on problems faced by Deserted Women of Uttarakhand, to sensitize the policy makers, administration and society towards the pathetic social and economic status these women are facing. This hearing was successful in raising the issue of deserted women at national level and was addressed in National Policy for Women. Increase leadership qualities of women in self help groups helped women in contesting and winning the panchayat elections. This has helped in raising women issues and concerns at decision level.

 

 

 

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