The moment one says Rajasthan, we start imagining the desert. It is no surprise to learn that several regions in the state suffer from extreme water scarcity. One such region was the Tontari village. For decades, the people of this village had been facing a severe water crisis and were struggling to perform daily chores such as cooking, irrigation or feeding animals. A CSR project gave this region a new lifeline and improved the water availability for the residents.
The CSR Project
By constructing two masonry check dams on the river Bamani, which not only store water but have also increased groundwater in the Dholpur area, the Coca-Cola India Foundation joined forces with the Lupin Human Welfare and Research Foundation and the Rajputana Society of Natural History to solve the water problems in the Dholpur region of Rajasthan, which was also recently designated as the aspirational district of India. With the introduction of multi-crop farming, this project has improved the lives of almost 11,000 people in five nearby villages: Tontari, Bhimagarh, Reti, Jhande ka Purrah, and Kallapura.
Villagers in the area now cultivate bajra, tomatoes, potatoes, okra, and a variety of other vegetables over an area of about 500 acres thanks to the availability of water for irrigation. The produce is also sold in well-known markets like Delhi.
The project has created a 4.5 km long pond and helped the national water mission “Catch the Rain – where it falls, when it rains.” The project has produced an annual water replenishment potential of more than 1.4 billion litres. In a 10-square-kilometre area, the project refilled over 100 bore wells, 70 hand pumps, and raised the water table by over 2-3 metres in open wells.
Coca-Cola India’s Commitment to Improve Lives of Communities in Water Stressed Areas
The company is dedicated to enhancing the standard of living for underprivileged groups in areas of the nation with limited water resources. They typically concentrate on places that are prone to drought, locations where water shortage is an issue, and areas that should be compact and contiguous to support replications of initiatives in order to optimise their impact.
In Rajasthan, they have efforts for water stewardship and conservation in ten different districts: Jaipur, Ajmer, Dholpur, Banswara, Sawai Madhopur, Tonk, Sikar, Dungarpur, Alwar, and Baran.
They have successfully carried out more than 75 water-saving initiatives to establish “Amrit Sarovars,” which have given Rajasthan’s rainfall a storage capacity of more than 8 billion litres annually.
They have been successful in improving 2 lakh lives around the state by working closely with its bottling partners, Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), and local residents.