Overview: Community Development
GMRVF works with poor urban communities in several places. All programmes in these places begin with a thorough study and analysis of the problems of the communities. Subsequently, the Foundation works closely with the community to overcome these hurdles. For instance, in the case of Medaras or basket weavers of Rajam, it was found that multiple issues impeded development of the community. Alcoholism was draining the family income and inaccessibility to reasonable loans to purchase raw materials was leading them into debt traps. The Foundation’s solutions like counseling for de-addiction, provision of interest-free loans and formation of Self Help Groups have brought about a change for the better in the community.
The Foundation works in over 50 villages aiming to promote Participatory Rural Development and to strengthen village communities and their institutions. The efforts include creating health awareness, facilitating training for members of local institutions, initiating and working with youth clubs, developing village libraries, working with SHGs, afforestation etc.
Illegal encroachments in the Delhi Airport land were cleared in end 2006. The community has been given land by the Municipal Corporation of Delhi at Safda Ghevra JJ Colony. The Foundation has been working with the community since early 2007 to help them in the process of resettlement.
The interventions include: (1) short term measures like provision of water to meet daily needs, facilitation of transport for children to attend examinations in their schools in the airport vicinity, mosquito-fogging, organisation of health camps, programmes for group building and goal setting, etc. (2) long term measures like skill training of youth for employment; improving the quality of education through the establishment of pre-schools, tuition centres, provision of scholarships, etc; formation of women Self Help Groups and exploring home-based work options; opening a clinic, etc; and (3) facilitation of service provision including working with the authorities to expedite creation of quality infrastructure including water, sewage, street lighting, etc.