This is a story of hope in times of despair. The story of a village full of diversity, yet one where tribes are marginalised and vulnerable. But facing an identity crisis is perhaps the least of the worries faced by tribes from Kupiya Village in Chhatarpur, Madhya Pradesh. A severe scarcity of water was drying up any hopes for a prosperous future for these people who depend on agriculture as their primary source of livelihood.
It was here that Anandana- the
“My household landholding was approximately five acres, but this land was in a nook where no water was available for irrigation. It made our land infertile and us very poor and miserable. When Haritika staff came to our village with the ‘Wadi’ development project, it promised to bring prosperity to all villagers with the proposed borewells and water harvesting structures. In keeping with the need of villagers, Haritika made three borewells but unfortunately, none of them were successful. By then, most people in our village had become hopeless and had abandoned their support for the Haritika staff.
However, some of us tribe members did not let our hopes sink. After a few weeks, and before rainy season a pond was made by Haritika with the support of Anandana—The
It was a life changing event for us. Now we all have reaped the fruits of our labour. My family members and I have planted three thousand plants and we also cultivate vegetables in our land. Since water is now available in abundance, farming work has come back on track. All of this has become possible only because of that pond which has recharged the land and has made this miracle a real possibility. Now we all are happy.” avers a beaming Kariman.
Two check-dams were constructed in Kupiya Village, which also helped raise ground water levels in the village and nearby areas.
Under project ‘Wadi,’ Haritika provided the farmers biopesticides, biofertilizers, fencing plants, and intercropping plants. They also aided them in digging pits within their land and planting seeds.
As the water replenishment project was based on a river basin approach, a series of water harvesting structures were constructed which created a recharge potential of over 149 million liters. This helped serve water to the inhabitants of Sigrampura, Amarpura, Agra, Ramnagar, Kupiya, Singrampura and Amroniya.
Avani Mohan Singh, a founding member of Haritika, “Hartika is the first NGO to be associated with Anandana as an NGO partner.
Together with Anandana, we have developed two model villages in Patna and Chandanpura in the Bijawar Block of Chhatarpur. Haritika, along with the people of Bundelkhand are very thankful to Anandana and hope that we will continue on our journey together towards development.”