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NRLM SELF HELP GROUP WOMEN EMERGE AS COMMUNITY WARRIORS

Why in news?

SHG members have emerged as community warriors by contributing in every possible way to contain the spread of COVID-19. As the masks were the first line of defence against COVID-19, SHGs immediately took up the task of production of masks.

Details

  • Approximately 690 lakh women members of around 63 lakh Self Help Groups (SHGs) across the country formed under the DAY-NRLM, Ministry of Rural Development, are engaged in livelihoods activities, bringing social change through awareness generation, leading movements and responding during natural calamities.
  • The SHG network across the country was made aware of the various aspects of the disease including the need to maintain personal hygiene, social distancing etc.
  • SHGs members are creating awareness in the local communities by various means like telephone calls, wall writings, pamphlets/fliers etc. Social media is also being used extensively.
  • SHG volunteers are playing their role in ensuring that people maintain social distancing in markets, PDS shops etc.

Some noteworthy steps taken by some State Rural Livelihood Missions (SRLMs) re:

  • JEEViKA, Bihar stepped in and started working on IEC materials that would help in awareness and preparedness for the outbreak. JEEViKA is trying to systematically reach out to a maximum number of households through its 1.4 Lakh SHGs and spread the awareness on topics such as handwash, sanitation, quarantine and isolation and social-distancing.
  • The Didi helpline, a telephonic helpline initiated by Jharkhand SRLM, is open 24 hours to help migrant labourers by providing them verified information.
  • Notable efforts have been made by women of Kudumbashree in Kerala, to help dispel the widespread fake news that causes panic.

DAY-NRLM

  • National Rural Livelihood Mission (NRLM) is a poverty alleviation project implemented by Ministry of Rural Development, Government of India.
  • This scheme is focused on promoting self-employment and organization of rural poor.
  • The basic idea behind this programme is to organize the poor into SHG (Self Help Groups) groups and make them capable for self-employment.
  • Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana – National Rural Livelihood Mission (DAY-NRLM) is a new name given to Aajeevika – NRLM in November 2015.
  • The initiative to move towards a demand-driven strategy enabling the states to formulate their own livelihoods-based poverty reduction action plan is at the core of the mission.
  • The strength of Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana-National Rural Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NRLM), Ministry of Rural Development, are the approximately 690 lakh women members of around 63 lakh Self Help Groups (SHGs) across the country.

What are SHGs?

  • Self-Help Groups (SHGs) are informal associations of people who choose to come together to find ways to improve their living conditions.
  • It can be defined as self governed, peer controlled information group of people with similar socio-economic background and having a desire to collectively perform common purpose.
  • Villages face numerous problems related to poverty, illiteracy, lack of skills, lack of formal credit etc. These problems cannot be tackled at an individual level and need collective efforts.
  • It looks to build the functional capacity of the poor and the marginalized in the field of employment and income generating activities, and resolves conflicts through collective leadership and mutual discussion.
  • It provides collateral free loan with terms decided by the group at the market driven rates.
  • Such groups work as a collective guarantee system for members who propose to borrow from organised sources. Consequently, Self-Help Groups have emerged as the most effective mechanism for delivery of microfinance services to the poor.
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September 2022
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