Generate meaningful understanding of community
The 73rd constitutional amendment transferred great amounts of governance responsibility to local governing bodies i.e. Gram Panchayats and Gram Sabhas. The amount of resources transferred to these institutions under the 14th finance commission are immense. If planned and implemented better these resources can be critical in the development of rural areas of India. There are several challenges in achieving full potential of these decentralised governance institutions,
Some of these are:
- Trust gap between citizens and their governing institutions
- Lack of capacity of local governing institutions with regard to fulfilling aspirations of their citizens
- Lack of resources
- Inadequate transfer of powers and responsibilities to these institutions in true spirit
This has led to distressing situations for large populations of rural areas. Hindustan Talks designed its agriculture development activities keeping in mind the above points.
Objectives of Governance Initiative
Promote and strengthen good governance practices among Panchayats
Providing enabling assistance to panchayats towards developing and implementing long-term participatory multi-sector plans around the key development sectors
Enable panchayats to improve access to information and entitlements for improving the quality of lives of their citizens
The strategy of the programme is to bring three key stakeholders - citizens, Panchayats and government administration on one platform, and to establish a smooth communication's information flow, data, execution action, results etc. among all these stakeholders. Our approach is to work with both the demand side as well with the supply side for improvement in overall governance system
IN Rural Governance, Promotion and strengthening of community based organisations has been the core of Hindustan talks's work since the beginning. Over time we have promoted range of community organisations based on community needs.
All COMMUNITY BASED INSTITUTIONS liaison with block and district level government offices for ensuring basic services like drinking water, sanitation and supply of rations.
One COMMUNITY BASED INSTITUTION in Jharkhand is working on domestic violence and other domestic disputes for ensuring legal justice for their members.
Self Help Groups (SHGs)
Women Self Help Groups are engaged in ensuring financial services for their women members. A large proportion of SHGs have also taken up micro-enterprises as livelihood activity either as a group activity or supporting individual members. SHGs have also played an important role in motivating their members in taking up sanitation activities at the household level. From 2014, the total number of SHGs promoted by Hindustan talks reached over 500 with more than 5000 members.
Village Development Committees (VDCs) and Village Organisations (VOs)
Village development committees and Village Organizations are designed to work on the holistic development of villages particularly in tribal dominant regions where villages face challenges on several fronts. VDCs have membership of both men and women members with equal representations while VOs have only women as members. These platforms often work very closely with Panchayat and government grassroot service providers at the village level to resolve critical problems in the village.
Watershed Development Committees (WDCs)
Watershed Development Committees coordinates the watershed works at village level in addition to ensuring norms around the management of natural resources within villages. These committees have faced severe shortage of resources during recent years due to change in government policies on watershed management works.
Drinking Water and Sanitation Management Committees
Management and maintenance of drinking water and sanitation infrastructure post construction is very critical for continuous access of these services. Drinking water and sanitation committees are playing an important role in facilitating social norms around sustainable use such infrastructure. These committees also help to liaison with Panchayat and other departments wherever required. Monitoring the use of toilets built under Swachh Bharat Mission is a continuous activity for these WATSAN committees.
School Management Committees (SMCs)
School Management Committees are Right to Education Act (RTE) mandated committees for community participation in ensuring compulsory and quality education of children. Hindustan Talks is working on strengthening these committees so that they can play an active role in the education of children at thevillage level. SMCs are encouraged to participate actively in various school development activities like planning, budgeting, enrolment of children, retention of children, infrastructure maintenance and grievance redressal.