IDA brings peace to distressed souls ...


Kendujhar is a one of the Schedule Tribe (ST) dominated districts of Odisha (44.5%) with the extensive presence of Iron ore Mines in the global map. Schedule Cast constitute 11.62% of the total population. The district is highly endowed with mineral resources. As per an estimate, 35,000 people are engaged in mines as daily labourers.Bhuyans, Gonds, Hos, Juanga s are the main tribal inhabitants.The overall HDI of the district shows 0.530 and ranks 24th in the state-579. Similarly, GDI ranking is 20th in the state as per the 2004 Human Development Report. The per capita income of ST/OBC people is quite low in comparison to State and National average. In Food Security Outcome Index, the district ranks at 19th 0.415. Almost 69 percent of the population depends on Agriculture as their primary livelihood, more than 35% of the workforce comprises of agricultural laborers implying vulnerable economic status. More than 80% of the total population resides in rural areas and is afflicted by poverty related issues. The vast forest, water resources have been completely affected by mining activities for the last three decades has resulted in affecting the economic condition of poor tribal.

Sundargarh is another tribal district in Odisha adjacent to Keonjhar District inhabited mostly by tribal people. It comes under the fifth schedule area category and hence is a PESA district. The tribes of Gond, Khadia, Oram, Bhuyan and PBT live in this district. In the geological map it finds a significant place as it is home to the ores of Iron, Manganese, Limestone, coal and several other minerals including housing the biggest coalmine of Asia. The vegetation cover of the district is significant as it is also the source of income generation for the forest dwelling & tribal people. Among the thirty district of Odisha Sundargarh is one. Sundargarh is situated at western part of Orissa and earlier it was GADAJAT area ruled by the local emperor. This district comprises of 3nos of Sub-division, 17nos of blocks and 262 Nos of Gram panchayat, and 1744 nos of Revenue villages and dominated by tribal population. Sundargarh district comes under the fifth schedule area of the constitution and the Orissa scheduled Areas Transfer of Immovable Property By scheduled Tribes) Regulation 1956 or under the PESA Act. We have been focusing on organization building among communities, NPM and IPM along with natural farming practices in Lathikata, Gurundia and Kutra Block of Sundargarh District.

Almost 69 percent of the population depends on Agriculture as their primary livelihood while more than 35% of the workforce comprises agricultural labourers, implying a highly vulnerable economic status. More than 80% of the total population resides in rural areas and is afflicted by poverty related issues. The vast forest and water resources have been badly affected by mining activities for the last three decades, adversely affecting the economic condition of the poor tribals.

Our Approach :

The strategy is to primarily empower the mining affected community and harness and consolidate their collective strength through community-based organizations at the grassroots level. IDA strives to usher in social transformation by changing the mind-set of the people from that of beneficiaries to entrepreneurs so that they themselves can become the drivers of the process of growth and positive change. As a catalyst of change, IDA kindles the latent potential of the community and harnesses their strength to explore and avail the opportunities around them optimally. In our approach, it is most important that people themselves become actively involved in identifying their problems, find out possible solutions and chase their dreams. IDA strongly believes in a holistic approach where human-centric growth is paramount for a lasting impact. The community must have access to quality food, shelter, clothes and education, health services and, most importantly, access to livelihood options suitable to their skill sets, culture and environment. Protecting and nurturing a strong value system is another important aspect where the vulnerable sections among the community get their due importance and recognition.

Our Values EQUALITY:

Every member of the team is equally important and respected. COLLECTIVE DECISION MAKING: We encourage free exchange of ideas, giving voice to the concerns of all the groups and making everyone accountable to each other. DECENTRALIZATION: Decentralization of planning and implementation at the grassroots level, besides enabling and empowering individuals to articulate their needs. SELF-RELIANCE: The communities strive for self-reliance making use of their traditional wisdom and value their resources, including knowledge and skill and adopt a lifestyle molded on the local environment and based on eco-friendly and healthy principles sensitive to natural resources. AUSTERITY: Austerity in thought and action, as well as lack of barriers and levels that prevent direct interaction. INCLUSIVE GROWTH: The growth model must be inclusive with special emphasis on the vulnerable and underprivileged groups.

Our Good Practices and Impacts :

The Governing Board meets at regular intervals and discusses the pros and cons of an issue threadbare before taking an informed decision. The Board members are involved intensely in the decision making process. IDA believes in a participatory approach to discussion and decision making reflected through its staff meetings and other communication channels. We have a well-defined, standardized HR Policy, system and practices including staff security, staff development and promotion. We believe in involving the community right from planning and implementation to monitoring/review and evaluation so that they develop a sense of ‘ownership’. This is extremely important to ensure their acceptance of the decisions and active participation in the growth process.
Promotion of Agriculture Clusters About 82% of farm households in the district belong to the small land holding category, implying unsustainable practices making agriculture a subsistent practice for survival at best than a viable livelihood option. Low intensity farming practices in the absence of knowledge and skill for high intensity farming leads to low productivity. Unsustainable agricultural practices like over exploitation of land and water, mono cropping and use of chemical inputs have put these resources in danger. The size of the agricultural land has steadily decreased putting more pressure on farm field. Per capita land availability has lowered fast over generations, putting pressure on poor farmers to produce more for their survival. This is leading to harmful farm practices. IDA is committed to promoting Agriculture clusters based on the paradigm that collectivization is a key tool for minimizing the scale disadvantages faced by small and marginal farmers in improving their bargaining power. Favourable agro-climate in highland regions of Odisha creates possibilities of round-the-year high value crops, especially fruits and Vegetables. Synchronizing agricultural operations at a critical threshold level as per the market requirement will attract market actors. Creation and use of irrigation sources, orchard development, improved livestock rearing, farm mechanization and other livelihood assets are critical factors for doubling the farmer’s income. Sustainable and climate resilient practices of agriculture are critical for small holders. Reconfiguring FPO arrangement and building the required ecosystem are critical to sustainable growth, integrating technology as a driver of efficiency and sustainability. IDA has organised 3000 plus small land holder farmers under its cluster development approach. The results have been quite encouraging. Production of crops, including that of high value crops, has gone up in varying degrees. Robust market linkage has already yielded good margins for the small farmers. The augmentation in income has had a positive impact on nutrition, health, education and overall standard of living. A vibrant ecosystem is created where more such small farmers are coming together to improve their collective strength while reaping the benefits of an entrepreneurial approach to farming.
Promotion Program of( Ragi )Millet is promoted in the district of Kendujhar and sundargarh for its high nutritional values with support from District Mineral Fund (DMF). Considering the dense nutritional value of Ragi, it has been chosen to combat hunger and malnutrition among the poor. IDA is implementing the program in Keonjhar and Sundargarh district of Odisha . The approach is to increase household consumption of Ragi coupled with increased production. As best practices: seed treatment, 5 optimum time of sowing or transplantation and use of bijambruta, jibamruta, Amrutjal, Handikhat were introduced. This initiative has encouraged utilization of hilly and sloppy land which was lying unutilized. Millet has emerged as a widely accepted supplementary food grain with manifold increase in demand. More than 4000 families have benefitted from this initiative and improved nutrition profile.