Rubal Agarwal, Managing Director of Mahila Arthik Vikas Mahamandal (MAVIM) and Shilpa Mittal Singh and Ronald Van het Hof, joint Managing Directors of Women on Wings, have signed an MOU on January 31, 2023, in Mumbai with a mission to co-create sustainable livelihood for rural women of Maharashtra. Both parties have agreed to collaborate for a minimum period of three years; starting from January 2023 till January 2026.
Women on Wings’ mission is completely aligned with the objective of MAVIM. MAVIM is a groundbreaking initiative undertaken by the Government of Maharashtra, under aegis of the Women and Child Welfare Department. Its mission is to bring about gender justice and equality for women, investing in human capital and the capacity building of women, for making them economically and socially empowered and enabling them to access sustainable livelihoods.
MAVIMs programs have huge potential
One of the flagship programs of MAVIM is Tejaswini, which is funded by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD). The Program operates on a Federation model through a designated body of members called Community Managed Resource Centers (CMRCs). The role of the CMRC is to improve stability and sustainability of the Self Help Group movement in Maharashtra by providing grassroot institution building. The project improves income generation by developing participants’ skills and providing market and policy support. It increases women’s access to functional literacy and labor-saving infrastructure and boosts their participation in local governance. It also supports government policies that empower women.
The Nav Tejaswini program builds on the success of the Tejaswini program. It aims to enable one million poor rural households overcome poverty sustainably while improving rural women’s capacity to develop sustainable enterprises, engage in remunerative employment, and access markets. The project will support all existing nano- and micro-enterprise clusters, as well as developing new commodity clusters. Target beneficiaries are marginal farmers, livestock/fisheries micro-entrepreneurs, producers of non-farm products, workers in the service sector, and agricultural laborers.
Income and livelihood opportunities for women
Women on Wings conducted a field assessment in March 2022 and visited two CMRC’s to understand their current structure, functioning and activities undertaken. Based on the field assessment and the subsequent meeting with the MAVIM and IFAD team, it was agreed that Women on Wings would conduct a strategy workshop with the teams. During the two-day strategy workshop with the MAVIM and IFAD team in May 2022, the teams arrived at defining the why, how and what of MAVIM. Subsequently they worked on the ‘SWOT’, identified gaps and they jointly developed a road map for MAVIM.
The outcome of the workshop was that MAVIM will develop a separate revenue generating vertical aimed at creating a market for the rural women thereby providing them with sustainable income. To realize this, Women on Wings will offer a series of integrated interventions by the way of workshops at the leadership level of MAVIM. Shilpa Mittal Singh: “We are delighted and proud to work with MAVIM on its ambitious goals. Women on Wings will deliver the required business knowledge to MAVIM, jointly develop strategies and an implementable plan to create a scalable, market driven and self-sustained entity by 2026 that can continue to provide regular income and livelihood opportunities to the women mobilized under the Tejaswini and Nav Tejaswini programs.”
Picture f.l.t.r.: Shilpa Mittal Singh, Ronald van het Hof, Rubal Bansal, Meera Mishra (India country coordinator at IFAD)