Renewed hopes through improved livelihood

The produce of LRP supported vegetable farming
The produce of LRP supported vegetable farming. Photo: UNDP Nepal

The unused waste land of ward 7 in Koluha Bagaiya village, Mahottari has turned into a lush green vegetable farm after 30 poor Dalit families and other marginalized groups leased the land to plant quick-profit green vegetables like cucumber, gourd and lady's finger.

UNDP's Livelihood Recovery for Peace Project (LRP) project has provided grant assistance to 131 marginalized community groups to start income generation activities and promote micro-enterprises in the poorest pockets of Mahottari and Sarlahi districts.

Highlights

  • In 2011, with LRP support, 6,003 disadvantaged households have received seed grants to start Income Generating Activities.
  • In 2011, with LRP support, 105 Women's Rights Forums were formed, trained and mobilised.

“My wife is better than me in tagging prices on vegetables and selling them in the weekly haat bazaar," says Mukhiya Mandal of Koluha Bagaiya. The landless couple who had no such source of income made Rs. 1500 this season by selling their first round of vegetable production and they hope for a good increase in income in the following months.

Currently there are 3,770 people engaged in micro enterprises, other income generation activities and also at the same time transferring the technology to similar groups.

The landless Mushahar community who were once the bonded slaves of landlords without any other means of income lived in hunger, malnutrition and starvation. They have now taken to agriculture – growing vegetables collectively in Majhora village of Mahottari. This is a significant change in their lives. Altogether 61 members of the two community groups are now growing off-seasonal vegetables.

The LRP has provided Rs. 7,29,000 (US$10,267) to the two groups to lease the land, purchase tools, seeds and other necessary logistics.