Women become coequal players in the economic life of the community

Livelihood

FXB India Suraksha (FXBIS)’s  livelihood strategy focuses on empowering women and families from the most disadvantaged and vulnerable communities and social groups. Given that women are still perceived as subordinate to men in most communities, the vast majority of our activities under this domain emphasize the economic empowerment of women and increased access to economic resources. The envisioned impacts of FXBIS poverty and livelihood programmes are the overall improvement of living standards and the emergence of economically self-reliant families where women play an active and equal role. To reach this objective, FXBIS provides opportunities for skill-based employment for women (SDG #8), initiates group-based income generation activities, and connects program participants with relevant economic development and social security schemes. In this manner, FXBIS builds new linkages with the private sector and government (SDG #17) to “end poverty in all its forms” (SDG #1), reduce inequalities (SDG #10), and promote gender equality (SDG #5) all at once.

FXBIS Actions over the years

2015 : Through 18 business units running in 4 states, 496 women were directly employed in skill based livelihood promotion programmes. ‘Skill Building and Livelihood Promotion project’ reached out to 10 SHGs and in 10 villages of Ri-Bhoi district in Meghalaya. 130 youth from these villages were mobilized for training in livelihood with the support of IL&FS Education and Technology Services Limited. FXBIS assists local communities in establishing agro-allied enterprises such as Broom-Making and Bee Keeping enabling them to leap from subsistence farming to income generation through product processing and marketing.

2014: In Vishakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, 90 HIV AIDS infected/affected women were provided with revolving funds and loans through a cooperative. With the support from Cairn India, FXB India Suraksha promoted sustainable livelihoods in seven habitations in S. Yanam village in East Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh. 13 self help groups with 150 women were formed and trained in incense sticks making, mushroom cultivation, broom making, & chalk piece making. Seven clusters of brooms sticks suppliers are formed from within the community, which nurtures about 80 poor households as raw material suppliers of the broom units and benefiting them financially.

2013 : FXBIS in partnership with Lafarge (world’s largest cement made manufacturer) intervened in four villages of Bilaspur district of Chhattisgarh where there were limited employment opportunities because of high rate of migration. With the endeavor to livelihood support 9 SHGs were formed with about 105 members. The groups were trained for mushroom cultivation and thereafter a resource centre for promoting mushroom clusters was established.

2012 : In Visakhapatnam (Andhra Pradesh) 170 poor women formed a first of its kind in the state, Mutually Aided Cooperative Society to enable them to have access to financial services, technical material support to run their small business. Until March 2013, 36 women had availed small loans to meet the capital needs to run the business. FXB supported formation of the community owned MAC approach. 80 women from the community became its  shareholders. Low cost sanitary napkins produced by the women members were sold to the girls hostel in Andhra University.

2011 :  9 women from Mathur Chinna Colony, Villupuram were trained and provided with a set of machines for Coir Rope making. 9 fisher women of Uppada in Andhra Pradesh started a  high-quality fish drying and packaging unit and received certification as a successful IGA unit by the Govt. Fisheries Department.. Both groups became self-reliant and have added Rs. 3500 to their monthly income. The strength of the FXB-Village Network lies in its integrated approach and in the personalised support to the participants.

2010: Over 400 beneficiaries were trained in various income generating activities like fish-trading, shoe making, handloom weaving, bamboo products making. SHG based IGA were initiated which inculcated the habit of savings amongst beneficiaries- about 70% of the beneficiaries opened savings account in all the sites. The success of FXB-Village Network-1 has helped replication of the model in Villupuram in Tamil Nadu.

2009:  Sayamsidhha a new model of empowerment was launched in an Urban Slum in West Bengal. The women of FXB-Village in Dhapa, West Bengal were actively engaged in the manufacture of jute products through a small production unit called Sayamsidhha. The unit made a range of jute products like bags, folders, coasters, mats and hammocks unique in their design, eco-friendly material and customization. This helped in increase of income and in improving the basic quality of lifestyle for the women involved. The unit also participated in the 2009 trade fair organised in Kolkata.

2008 : 423 families started their own business ventures like candle making, shoe making, weaving, vegetable vending, poultry farming, goat rearing, jewellery  making among others. One or two members of the families were provided with training and a seed capital of 5000 rupees for starting their businesses. Each of the families were able to earn 2000 rupees per month in the first year itself.

2007 : FXBVillages in Vizag in Andhra Pradesh, Aizwal in Mizoram, East Imphal in Manipur and Dhapa- Tangra and Medinipur in West Bengal strengthened communities to become self sufficient. 80-100 families in each became better equipped with information, knowledge, access to healthcare, education facilities and skills to earn an income.

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Author: Fxb India Suraksha

FXB India Suraksha (FXBIS) is an Indian non-governmental, non-profit organization providing developmental assistance to disadvantaged women and children, families and communities in rural and urban India. The well-being and protection of children is at the heart of all FXBIS interventions. In order to ensure a child-friendly environment FXBIS committed to redress social vulnerabilities by empowering marginalized families and strengthening communities. As the country chapter of the Geneva-based NGO François-Xavier Bagnoud International (FXBI), FXB’s activities in India date back to 1991. In 2007 FXB India Suraksha was established as an autonomous Indian entity registered under section 8 of the Companies Act, 2013. FXBIS’ area of intervention expanded over the years from its original focus on working with families affect by HIV/Aids to a community-based, multi-sectoral programme approach along its four ‘Domains for Change' – Access to Quality Education, Poverty and Livelihood, Improved Health Status, and Child Rights and Protection. Currently FXBIS is directly implementing projects covering issues related to the areas of children rights and protection, gender equality, improved health and nutrition, sanitation and water, care and support to HIV/Aids infected and affected people, better education, enhanced livelihoods options as well as human trafficking prevention. Today, FXBIS works in different pockets across 15 Indian states and union territories reaching out to over 200,000 people through its community-based integrated interventions.

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