East Godavari, Andhra Pradesh, October 5, 2015: Yellamalli Rani who takes care of the broom making cluster, in Jallivari peta village, East Godavari District of Andhra Pradesh feels proud to be an independent woman. She says, "Most of the people in our community people depend on seasonal agriculture labor work but FXB India Suraksha (FXBIS) has offered us a new source of income. FXBIS motivated us to collect brooms sticks and helped develop area wise clusters of suppliers. I started our group with two suppliers and now there are 37 members in my cluster and all of them are earning well.”
The story of Yellamalli is just one of the many that has taken shape as a result of a joint initiative of FXBIS and Cairn India. The project that has a special focus on women population is promoting sustainable livelihoods through Self Help Groups based collective enterprises in seven habitations of S. Yanam village of East Godavari district in Andhra Pradesh.
East Godavari being a coastal region has abundance of coconut trees. The great demand of brooms made out of coconut leaves matched the demand and supply need hence creating an opportunity for income generation for household with limited incomes. As part of the project, the identified interested women from the villages were briefed about the process, activities and the expected incomes. Initially, FXBIS organized training programme for six women and also facilitated an exposure visit to the existing unit in the other village and encouraged local women to collect brooms sticks and supply to the production unit.
It started with three household and in no time the number of families supplying the raw materials to the Suraksha Brooms sticks making unit reached to 120 families. Amma, 68, from Jallivari peta says, "With this additional income, now we can save money for the weekly market and buy vegetables to eat, which was hard before".
The unit is producing varieties of brooms which is garnering good demand in the market as a result of which each member is able to earn additional Rs.1000 per month, which is saved in their bank account and shared proportionately every six months after allotting adequately for future business needs of the unit.
With women owning the business, and more than 100 families being directly benefitted, the Suraksha broom making unit has increased the confidence and dignity of those engaged. Now they are able to spend their own earning for their children nutrition and education needs.
FXBIS with the support from Cairn is promoting many more such income generating initiatives such as incense sticks making, mushroom cultivation, chalk piece making, paper plate making & leaf plate stitching units in different villages in Andhra Pradesh.