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Building Resilience: The Role of SHILP in empowering Deeksha Mahila Welfare Society

“During the pandemic, our organization faced significant challenges as its operations were affected. However, the support that came to us through SHILP, helped us in moving ahead and we learnt how to increase membership and raise funds”, said Shanti, who heads Deeksha Mahila Welfare Society (DMWS) – an organization that is enrolled under Community Action Collab’s initiative, SHILP. Deeksha Mahila Welfare Society is a Farmers producer Organization (FPO). The organization also works in areas such as migration, conservation, financial literacy training, education, and skill-building for rural people etc.

DMWS is one of the many organizations that joined SHILP in order to build and sustain resilience amid crises. Under SHILP, the leaders of the organizations are provided with structured inputs to improve their skills to lead their institutions and communities, help them develop a structured work plan, build systems and processes and strengthen their governance mechanisms for their institutions to be resilient.

Deeksha Mahila Welfare Society has a strong background in engaging the communities they work with, but they had not previously considered how to sustain their efforts. While they did provide support to farmers in the form of seeds, seed banks, and livestock, they did not have the experties to address sustainability and strength. Prior to the intervention of SHILP, DMWS had not considered how to strengthen their organization, which would have allowed them to work with more farmers. However, with the intervention and guidance they received they began to focus on this critical aspect of their work.

Subsequently, the organization took decisions that would result in the set up of three new tribal FPOs, which now enables them to manage more commodities, divide the increased work and responsibilities equally among all the organizations, and give more credit to farmers who are in need. The organization is also focusing on marketing their work in order to expand it further.

Through SHILP, Community Action Collab is working to build the resilience of community organizations like Deeksha Mahila Welfare Society by providing leadership training, networking opportunities, peer learning etc and these efforts have been instrumental in strengthening the capacity of these organizations to serve their communities and respond to changing circumstances.