Upcoming Projects

Quenching thirst!

Water is the basic necessity of life and everyone has a right to get adequate amount of it. But in today’s scenario it has become an asset of the rich and people from weaker sections of the society do not have an easy access to it . Situation is grave for those who live in remote villages of desert areas like Rajasthan. We propose to install tube well at these places.

Barmer is one such place suffering from extreme water problem. It is a beautiful district of Rajasthan (India), situated in the Thar Desert or the Great Indian Desert. Water is the scariest commodity in the area. Due to its geographical conditions, common sources of drinking water are very limited. 45.1 percent households fetch water from the supply tanks followed by 26.5 percent who get it from the tanks or wells in which they harvest rainwater. 9.1 percent households have tap as drinking water source and 6.8 percent fetch it from river (mainly in Sindhari block). 2.8 percent households depend on ponds.16.8 percent respondents have to cover 1-2 kilometers whereas 9.7 percent respondents have to cover 3-5 kilometers. There are 9.2 percent households, which have to cover more than five kilometers to get drinking water.

Bindani and Binjrad are two of the many small villages that come under the district of Barmer. These extend just 7 kilometers away from India Pakistan border. Most of our Artisans belong to these villages. This is why these villages are our centre point for constructing a tubewell.

Just at the end of the so-called rainy season in the district of Barmer, it is facing a major drought threat. While people in the towns can still manage with the meagre supply from the PHED/PWD pipelines & water tankers, those in rural areas, including Bindani and Binjrad , are struggling for even drinking water. They have to walk kilometers to fetch water from tube wells of other nearby villages (8-10 km away). Some of those who can afford try to get water through water tankers or camel carts from the neighboring villages. These villages do not have water supply while people in towns, who supposedly have been provided for water supply, get water only once or twice in seven days.

The situation is worst in the rural areas of Bindani & Binjrar, where people live in `dhanis’ (hamlets) and have to walk for kilometers to fetch water. These villages are completely dependent on the very scanty rainfall for its water supply, where no other alternative source of water is available. While the Luni River has dried up, there are no lakes, ponds or step-wells in this desert. The water levels in the existing wells have already gone down and it gets worse every month. Even after walking 8-10 kilometers in the harsh heat of the sun, all they manage is one bucket of water. Bindani is 9 Kilometers away from Sodala, where they have a government pipeline in working condition and the people of Bindani manage the supply of water for the whole village from there only. Same is the condition with Binjrad, where they have a pipeline but they haven’t received any water in the last 6 years. These people manage water from a nearby village know as Ghonia, which is 8 to 10 K.m. far from the place.

There are water projects like the Barmer Left Water Project, a public-private partnership which will provide 162 villages in Jaisalmer and 529 in Barmer, with drinking water. The Indira Gandhi Left Canal Project. The state government had sanctioned Rs 88 crore for this lift scheme, which will carry waters from the Indira Gandhi Canal to 177 villages in Jaisalmer district and 403 in Barmer. Also, the project to bring Narmada water to the district through Gujarat via Jhalore. There are also several other pipeline governmental and private projects. Public Health Engineering Department is implementing drinking water programmes in the district. Barmer is reeling under acute shortage of drinking water. Out of total 73 tube wells constructed, only 23 are working. Though the government has done a good job in last 5 years, drinking water is a most sought after need of the people. As per the survey conducted under Rajiv Gandhi Drinking Water Mission, there are 4558 hamlets but water could be made available to only 2483 hamlets. 69 villages and 2075 hamlets are still to be provided with drinking water facility.

Both Governmental and Non- Governmental Organizations have done a lot for the above issues and have been able to achieve water supply in Barmer District but the villages in 70 to 80 k.m interior like Binjrad and Bindani are still facing a lot of problems as it will take years to extend these schemes to these areas.

An immediate solution for these areas would be to construct tube wells for the welfare of the community. But since the water level here is too low, very deep borings have to be done. One tubewell would cater to the needs of at least a hundred families.

Lighting up life

SETU currently works with over 20000 artisans and the number is increasing with each passing day. Many of our artisan groups reside in remote villages where they have little or no access to electricity and therefore have to face difficulties in day-to-day life. In the absence of electricity, villagers are left with no other option but to use kerosene lamps. These lamps though are easy to use, have many drawbacks associated with their use. Following is a list of some of them:

Drawback of kerosene lamps

  1. These lamps do not provide good light intensity.
  2. Are smoky in nature.
  3. Kerosene lamps are a serious fire hazard in the developing world, killing and maiming tens of thousands of people each year.
  4. Fumes from kerosene lamps in poorly ventilated houses are a serious health problem
  5. The World Bank estimates that 780 million women and children breathing kerosene fumes inhale the equivalent of smoke from 2 packs of cigarettes a day.
  6. In rural areas, purchasing and transporting of kerosene or diesel fuel is often both difficult and expensive.

Solar lamps provide a solution to this problem as they are ecofriendly in nature and therefore offers the following advantages

Advantages of solar lamps

  1. Can be used by villagers in the field at night which used to be difficult with the use of fire prone kerosene lamps.
  2. Solar lamps help children to study at night without fear of getting burned or danger of inhaling unhealthy kerosene fumes.
  3. By the use of solar lamps villagers get 2-3 hours of extra working time at night which enhances their earnings by utilizing these additional hours in preparing food grains and carrying out other works.
  4. Use of a solar light rather than gensets or kerosene lamps reduces the time and expense of refueling and maintenance.
  5. Above all the solar lamps save on the consumption of kerosene to the extent of about 70-90 liters annually per household.
  6. Use of solar electric systems decreases the amount of local air pollution. With a decrease in the amount of kerosene used for lighting, there is a corresponding reduction in the amount of local pollution produced

Taking into consideration all these facts, SETU’s much awaited project took final shape in March 2011.  SURE is our first  beneficiary of this project, it is an all-women cooperative in western Rajasthan dealing in appliquéd art. Under this project each house in atleast two of the villages with 50 households each were provided with a solar panel & solar lamps.   It’s good to know that artisans are happy with the solar lights and will be using them for variety of purposes; this project tells us that we are moving in the right direction and surely the day is not too far away when we will achieve our goal of illuminating the world of every single artisan associated with SETU. We are looking forward to install more solar lamps in other artisan villages and would appreciate cooperation of any kind.

Health is Wealth

Artisans life revolves around their art, the most important thing in their life as it is the one which earns them daily bread.. They put a lot of efforts in enhancing their skills, attend workshops, try to learn the new techniques, update designs according to the latest trend and the like ; meaning, do all that they can. to achieve perfection in their respective area of expertise but while they are busy in doing all this one important part of their life is severely neglected i.e., health . Reasons are manifold, One is that they can’t afford the costly medical treatment, others are lack of awareness on health related issues and unavailability of medical aid in remote areas. Consequently they suffer from various health ailments.

Many of the artisans suffer from chronic eye diseases and need proper treatment but due to lack of facilities are not able to treat themselves. Some people unknowingly suffer from eye problems and consider it as just a factor of age and don’t take it seriously.

Women artisans are prone to many gynaec problems but they don’t have the accessibility for a gynecologist as rural artisans are conservative in nature and don’t allow the women to go for a medical checkup far away from home. Also, in absence of any, medical help women artisans are not aware of the various contraception measures.

Taking into account the above mentioned facts SETU finds a need of generating awareness among the rural artisan groups by organizing awareness camps. As far as the health matters are concerned SETU timely organizes health camps. Some eye check up and health checkup camps are in the pipeline and will be organized in the near future.

Health insurance

In an effort to provide health facilities to the rural poor, SETU sponsors health insurance for a family of four costing 5 $ / Rs. 200 per family covering a period of one year.

Sponsoring toolkits

The sole source of income for the artisans is their artform and it’s the most important thing in their life. For becoming expert in their respective fields artisans require up to date tools by which they can bring finesse in their art form. Sometimes, in the absence of proper tools artisans are left with no other option but to work with what is available to them resulting in products with designs which are not in line with the latest market trends. This is a serious issue and need to be dealt with adequate attention. Keeping in view this fact SETU sponsors toolkits to artisans as and when needed. Recently toolkits were provided to the wood carving artisans of Bijnor. Each toolkit holding cost of Rs. 750/-. The feedback was positive as the artisans got some help from the toolkits.

Making education accessible to the needy

Education though now a legal right in India is still out of the reach of many children. Here we are talking about the one’s belonging to the orphanages. These children being devoid of unconditional support of their parents get home in the form of orphanages like Amar Jyoti Charitable Trust where they get utmost care. Amar Jyoti is a voluntary organization rendering rehabilitative services to persons with disabilities through inclusive and integrated education, medical care, vocational training, child guidance and self-employment since 1981.With its pioneering concept of integration and inclusion, Amar Jyoti is running a school where 602 children with and without disability are studying together in equal number.

Being a part of the society it becomes the responsibility of every single individual to lend a helping hand to these little angels. SETU in one such efforts is committed to sponsoring the education of one differently abled child and one normal child as part of our mission.

The year ahead..Upcoming projects

Following is a list of our projects to be carried out in the year 2012-13. The activities are divided under two heads.

  • Sustainable development activities
  • Training workshops and related programme

Corresponding to each activity an estimated amount of budget is given, which is to be spent on that particular activity in the year 2010-11. To get further details/ breakup, please feel free to contact us.

List of activities planned for the year-2012-13

A). Sustainable development activities

HEALTH

Programme Budget Beneficiaries
Medical Health Camps General poor masses of surrounding areas.
General / HIV / AIDS / vaccination / hygiene / Malnutrition and anemia / Family planning and reproductive health . Poor urban artisans
Distribution of free medicines for the above prescriptions, including multivitamins & contraceptives. Poor rural artisans of desert areas.
Free or subsidized pathological tests for the above. Poor artisans (wood and jewelry making). Mentally and physically challenged kids.
Children & adolescents with special needs & underprivileged background
Distribution of Sanitary napkins as health & hygiene measure. Women artisan groups.
Eye check up camps.
Free eye check up. Eye check up camps: Rs. 35000 (for 100 patients).
Good quality spectacles free of cost to those diagnosed with poor vision.
Distribution of free medicines.
Provision of Medical Gadgets for health safety Ranging from Rs. 20,000-40,000
Provision for Medical & health insurance Rs. 11000 for 50 families (To cover a rural family of 4 for 1 year)

 

EDUCATION

Programme Budget Beneficiaries
Education sponsorship to a pair of children – one physically/mentally challenged & other belonging to below poverty line.  Rs. 75000 (total 10 children i.e 5 pairs of two, per pair Rs. 15000) Mentally and physically challenged kids.
Kids with special needs & underprivileged background.
Distribution of free medicines for the above prescriptions, including multivitamins & contraceptives. Kids of poor artisans
Free or subsidized pathological tests for the above. Kids of 7 ethnic Artisans communities

 

Safety kits and tool kits

Programme Budget Beneficiaries
Providing tool kits to artisans Rs. 14000 (for 20 toolkits) rural artisans dependent on tools (wood and jewelry making).
 Providing safety kits to artisans  Rs. 25000 (50 safety kits) Rural artisans with possible hazardous risks.

 

Environment protection

Programme Budget Beneficiaries
Plantation to strengthen green living Rs. 4000 per programme (10 programmes per year = Rs. 40,000) Student community & general masses
 Water conservation, energy conservation
Waste management awareness campaign
other green campaigns

 

Food & Food chain safety

Programme Budget Beneficiaries
Strengthening food chain & food safety Rs. 9000 per programme (3 programmes per year = Rs. 27000) Providing opportunities for growth & sustenance of livelihood to marginalized & underprivileged community section of rural/tribal/urban poor masses in 16 states.
Promotion of organic agriculture organic manure, organic food

 

Community development promotion

Programme Budget Beneficiaries
Community development promotion as new avenue/opportunities for students Rs. 30,000 (10 community development programmes) Various schools/colleges/universities and the student community in general

 

Infrastructure

Programme Budget Beneficiaries
Promoting Bore well (ground water resources) in the desert areas where drinking water is very hard to access Rs. 6.0 lacs (1 Borewell complete with fittings for water with drawl) Poor rural artisans of desert areas of Barmer
Providing solar lights (energy resources) in desert villages where people do not have access to electricity  Rs. 3.0 lacs (for electrification of 50 households)  Poor rural artisans of desert areas of Barmer
For toilet construction etc Rs. 15,000 per toilet Rural artisans of Lambani community in Karnataka

 

B). Organizing training workshops and related programmes

Programme Budget Beneficiaries
Workshops for helping the rural poor & tribal to become self-sustainable by helping them develop & improve their traditional skills and art to make it marketable and functional.Preservation of traditional art-form by providing them market & support system, to help them earn their livelihood. Rs. 17000 per programme (3 programmes per year = Rs. 51000) Poor rural artisans of desert areas of Barmer & Kutch
Arranging interactive sessions for poor rural/tribal/urban communities for their socio economic upliftment

 

Contributions to specific projects

If you are working for a special cause and want to donate for the same, we can also take up projects to your liking and work out the details on request.

For queries, please contact:

Rashmi Dhariwal

Ph.: 0141-2810977, 91-9829397225, 91-9829397229

Email: rashmi@setufairtrade.com

SETU Society is registered under the Societies registration act (XXI) of 1860. Donations to SETU Society are eligible for tax relief under section 80 G of the income tax act.

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