Community Development

Issue

Discrimination on the grounds of caste still dominates many rural areas of Tamil Nadu and caste-based violence and clashes are rising in districts such as Villupuram district. As a result, women from Dalit communities and Scheduled Castes are even more devalued and excluded socially, which has substantial detrimental psychological consequences on their self-esteem and self-confidence.

Fostering an atmosphere of solidarity and responsibility by facilitating exchanges that break down traditional barriers of social status, favouritism and geographic isolation, replacing myths and mistrust with open communication.

Challenging the assumptions of patriarchal and caste systems by bringing traditionally segregated groups together for discussions and engaging them in physical infrastructure projects, social exchanges and government welfare schemes.

  • We encourage communities to recognise issues and organise themselves into problem-solving teams that can implement solutions to problems in the settlements.
  • We provide a setting for discussion between groups that traditionally would have little probability of interacting within Indian society.
  • We give access to government and life insurance schemes in addition to expanding educational opportunities.
"In the exchange meeting we get the chance to make new friendships. All these people, I only get to know because of the exchange program. When I normaly see them in AVAG office, the only thing I know about them is from which village they come. But now we got to know each other as human beings. I know their feelings and their life-stories. We share our problems and laugh together. This makes me really happy."
Aruljothi

Exchange Program

Ottai-d (1)
kids eating

BREAKING Prejudices and Communication barriers amongst different Societal Groups
that are endemic to India.

Ottai-b

Micro Projects and Work Camps

Work Camps are aimed at improving minor physical infrastructure problems in the rural communities of Vanur Block

Background

Some physical infrastructure problems in the Vanur block communities are very small, from piled trash on the roadside or a need for a fence around a children’s play area. These problems they may be too minute for an outside organization to address without incurring high overhead costs.

Such infrastructure problems are often left unchecked despite their large adverse effects for daily village life.

Villagers can help reduce administrative
costs by planning projects and submitting proposals themselves, an important step in building their own capacity.

By using the existing SHG structure, costs are reduced, allowing AVAG to partner in projects through a small, one-time investment. Work camps are simple projects that can often be completed in half a day while micro projects sometimes take up to a week to complete.

Last year witnessed 25 work camps which involved 523 participants from both the genders. The work that was done was clearing the thorny bushes on the roadside, cutting the branches of the trees touching the electricity lines, cleaning the village streets and common places, collecting garbage, replacing a damaged electricity post.

The confidence and skills women have gained from participation in traditionally “male areas” of work has done much to earn them respect from their male counterparts,
a vital step in the gender sensitization process.

The year 2016-­‐‐2017 witnessed 25 work camps which involved 523 participants from both the genders. The work that was done was clearing the thorny bushes on the roadside, cutting the branches of the trees touching the electricity lines, cleaning the village streets and common places, collecting garbage, replacing a damaged electricity post.

The year 2016-­‐‐2017 witnessed 25 work camps which involved 523 participants from both the genders. The work that was done was clearing the thorny bushes on the roadside, cutting the branches of the trees touching the electricity lines, cleaning the village streets and common places, collecting garbage, replacing a damaged electricity post.

“I am very happy to be a part of the Women Solidarity Festival. Every woman in the village rejoiced and wholeheartedly participated as though it was a family event. The preparation and planning of the event started long before the event as the women planned the events, their attire, the uniform sarees and placards that would be torchbearers for their group. We were apprehensive that the weather may play spoil sport as it rained heavily three days prior to the event. I can now recall how we men rose to the occasion and got together to clean the ground and drain the excess water"
Srinivasan

Events and Community Celebrations

Community celebrations create opportunities for our SHG members to share their talents and achievements with their villages and those surrounding. Members coordinate the programme, inviting local leaders to watch stage performances and participate in events. This helps villagers learn about SHG activities and creates a forum for them to offer suggestions for improvement.

  • Women's Solidarity Festival
DSC_0065

Other Initatives

IMG_8564

Service and Awareness Camps

Last year,with the help of SHG’s we organised 21 service camps through which more than 1800 participants from the surrounding villages benefited.
Among them, 4 alcoholic de-addiction awareness programmes were held, with 600 participants. These resulted in 5 people sent to rehabilitation services.

DSC_0219

Emergency Response

We help organise residents to combine their efforts and respond to emergencies as a community.While many organisations only distribute relief materials,We follow a participatory approach for the well-being of the communities.Some our initiatives have been:  Disaster Management and Preparedness,House Repair Scheme, Mosquito control, Water purification, water borne disease prevention, food and clothing supply and health camps.

IMG_3396

Exposure trips

We organises Exposure Trips to promote social and cultural exchange between Auroville and the Bioregion and raise awareness on the issues rural communities face.

For newer AVAG members, the trips are focused on the areas of Auroville and Pondicherry. As groups mature they are led on trips in places farther away such as Mahabalipuram or Chennai. Activities include visits to the Auroville Botanical Gardens and Matrimandir where participants are educated to concerns of  global warming and integral lifestyles.

Close Menu
en_USEnglish
en_USEnglish