Expanding horizons under the women empowerment programme, Ambuja Cement Foundation (ACF) signed an MoU with Talwandi Sabo Power Limited (TSPL), a subsidiary of Vedanta Limited to reach out and promote 200 Self-Help Groups (SHG) in 20 villages in Mansa, Punjab. The association aims to develop at least three group microenterprises for the villages and initiate income generation activities mobilizing community awareness initiatives and establishing SHGs in 3 years.
TSPL has set up a thermal power plant of a capacity of 1980 MW in village Banawala, Mansa. Following its guiding principle of giving back to society, TSPL got into partnership with ACF for upscaling livelihood levels in the region. With this new association, TSPL will provide financial aid to ACF to launch its women empowerment programme in Mansa.
As a part of TSPL’s partnership, ACF has started imparting IGA (Income Generating Activities) training among rural women in the area for the past 5 months and is also working with 50 NRLM (National Rural Livelihood Mission) SHGs in seven villages in Phase 1 of the project. ACF will also aim to provide kitchen gardening kits to 100 SHGs and support 200 SHGs in the area within 3 years.
Talking about the new partnership with TSPL, Ms Pearl Tiwari, Director & CEO, Ambuja Cement Foundation said, “ACF works on a vision to build prosperous communities through long-term partnerships. As our major focus is on women, gender and livelihoods, our new partnership with TSPL will further support us to drive impactful initiatives under the women empowerment programme and enhance our already existing programmes in Punjab.”
Mr. Vikas Sharma CEO TSPL remarked, “At Vedanta, we foster a culture of Care and Respect towards all and are committed to the socio-economic development of the area of operation. Through this project, we aim at empowering women through financial inclusion and linking them with income generation opportunities which shall have a transformative and multiplier effect in boosting household economy and also contribute towards development of the area.”
In Mansa district, ACF has been implementing the agro-based livelihood programme for 12000 farmers of 95 villages for the last five years. Awareness session and sustainable farming practices were provided and farmers were motivated to adopt Better Cotton Initiative. 27 farmers are using water-conserving techniques like drip irrigation, sprinkler irrigation and farm ponds and 85% of farmers are using laser leveling technique introduced by ACF. The organization has also organized awareness drives for 8400 farmers on crop reduction management and 540 farmer’s soil have been tested
With the already established support from local administrators due to ACF’s existing agro-based livelihood programme in the area, it is expected that the women empowerment programme will roll out seamlessly, reaching more beneficiaries to promote SHGs, income generation and savings.
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