Revolving Microcredit for Goat Rearing
In Bundelkhand, seasonal droughts brought on by climate change have ravaged communities that are entirely dependent on rain-fed agriculture. With a generous grant from the Weyerhaeuser Family Foundation, Asia Initiatives has partnered with Parmarth Samaj Sevi Sansthan to offer low interest loans to purchase goats.
Goats are an incredibly useful asset for women and their families to supplement agricultural income, especially as a backup when crops fail. Goat milk can be sold for extra income and used to improve the nutrition of families themselves. The goats also produce kids, which can also be sold at the market. The SoCCs for Goat Rearing project has eliminated forced seasonal migration due to drought and improved holistic wellbeing among participants. Women earn SoCCs by attending a range of sessions on cleanliness, tree planting, health, and organic farming.
Jasoda is from a tribal family in Rajpur village. She lives with her husband, in-laws and three children. She is only baseline literate but she has dreams for her life and her children. Her in-laws and husband are compelled to work as wage labourers to make ends meet. Jasoda also has to go into the city to work for daily wages. Because of this, her children’s education was badly affected. She was very worried as she wanted her children to study and have a better future.
When the SoCCs program was initiated in her village, Jasoda was among the first to take advantage of this opportunity. She was very happy to receive a loan to purchase three goats. She actively participated in SHG meetings and in SoCCs earning activities. She took good care of the original goats and now has three goat kids also. A beaming Jasoda says, “The program is a boon for me as I don’t have to go to cities any more for labour. I am hopeful of having good income by selling goat kids when they will be grown ups and this business will help me to bear the expenses of education of my children. Their future is secure and so is mine.”