FRANK Water in Chhattisgarh
What's The Challenge?
The state of Chhattisgarh was formed in 2000. Historically, the area has been exploited for its rich natural resources, including minerals and forests. This exploitation has come at a cost for local populations who have been increasingly marginalised.
The area is home to two of India’s 13 most vulnerable indigenous population groups, classified by the government of India as Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTGs).
What's FRANK Water doing about it?
Although eligible for government funding, tribal communities still lack basic services such as water and sanitation. During the summer, women and girls travel several kilometres to collect water from unsafe sources like open wells and streams. FRANK Water will work to empower 36 tribal habitations in the Kabirdham district to claim their rights from the Indian government, starting with a safe water supply.
We'll do this alongside our NGO Partner, Samerth, by supporting the community to organise committees and prepare resource plans and submit these plans to the correct government offices. We'll help ensure the plans are implemented with local governance systems in place in order to manage services in the long term.
Where we're up to
To date, we have worked with Samerth to install 1,230 toilets, 20 hand pumps (and repair a further 15), 39 wells, 174 kitchen gardens and 10 new ponds.
Since we started work with these 36 communities in 2014, we've manage to leverage £1,037,070 from the government for improvement within these communities.
At the regular meetings that Samerth has hosted for villagers, participation has been impressive, particularly amongst women and children. Meeting outcomes include installing a solar powered water pump at a village health centre, recruiting young people to a skills building programme and registering others for voting rights and job cards.
We've trained 109 tribal women and adolescent girls in menstrual hygiene management. As a result, it has become easier to work with the village women and girls in other respects.
Our advocacy has meant that all the water resource plans for 36 villages will be taken up in the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA) work plan for this year. This will create guaranteed paid work for individuals within our communities.