MahilaKisanSashaktikaranPariyojana (MKSP)is a special program initiated for livelihood enhancement and vulnerability reduction launched in 2010-11. The program envisages empowering women in agriculture and allied activities making systematic investments to enhance their participation and productivity, and also to create and sustain agriculture based livelihoods of rural women. The program is being implemented by NRLM in partnership with State Departments/CSOs as implementing partners (PIAs) across the country. The central to state share in funding for MKSP stands at 75:25 ratio.
Under NRLM, the core agenda of MKSP is to (i) create sustainable livelihood institutions around agriculture and allied activities (ii) create sector-specific geography-specific best package of practices and (iii) create a wide pool of community resource persons for scaling up livelihood interventions in the entire country.
The mission has narrowed down to two major themes, to work with partners in MKSP programme which are a) Sustainable Agriculture, b) Non Timber Forest Produce (NTFP).
I. Sustainable Agriculture: The core focus of MKSP under agriculture sector is to promote sustainable agriculture, where the inputs are localized, risks are mitigated, productivity is enhanced, food security is ensured and hence net income of family is increased. The important objectives of MKSP-Agriculture are to:
a. Create sustainable agricultural livelihood opportunities for women in agriculture;
b. Ensure food and nutrition security at the household and the community level;
c. Improve the skills and capabilities of women in agriculture to support farm-based activities;
d. Enhance the managerial capacities of women in agriculture for better management of bio-diversity
II. Non Timber Forest Produce (NTFP): The core focus of MKSP under NTFP sector is to enhance livelihoods of NTFP collectors by promoting the entire value chain at various levels - regeneration, collection, processing & marketing. The important objectives of MKSP-NTFP are to:
a. Ensure a better control of the institutions of the poor women NTFP collectors over the NTFP value chain.
b. Promote regeneration of NTFP species to improve the bio diversity and enhanced productivity
c. Build the capacity of the community in modern harvesting and post harvesting techniques to increase their income.
d. Promote value addition of NTFP to ensure higher returns
e. Develop market linkages for NTFP
Progress of the program in Odisha:
1.MKSP (Agriculture): Under MKSP (Agriculture) proposals of seven PIAs have been sanctioned by MoRD. PIAs under MKSP (Agriculture) are SODI Consortium-Lead-Madhyam / LAVS / Harsha Trust / Madhyam Foundation / ORRISSA / MS Swaminathan Research Foundation / PRADAN. These proposals with a total project cost of Rs.38.50 crores for three years will be covering 35,450 MahilaKisans of nine (9) districts of the states. The districts are Koraput, Rayagada, Malkangiri, Nabarangpur, Kalahandi, Keonjhar, Mayurbhanj, Khordha and Kandhamal.
2. MKSP (NTFP):Out of 37 project proposals received, six (6) proposals were recommended to National Mission Management Unit after a thorough desk appraisal and technical evaluation by domain experts. Four proposals have been recommended for further field appraisal, which has been completed. Project Approval Committee at MoRD has also considered that Odisha has satisfied the condition for transition to AAP hence delinking the NRLM-PIA relations. Hence these proposals will be taken up MKSP in Livelihoods Promotion Strategy, as part of Annual Action Plan.
ACTIVITIES PROPOSED UNDER THIS PROJECT:
• Capacity building of the women farmers for upgrading their skill and improving their capabilities for supporting farming activities
• Agriculture related productivity enhancement techniques/ measures should be given due importance.
• The agriculture strategy adopted under the Project should revolve around local natural resources based sustainable agriculture.
• The activities of the project may have blend of agriculture and Allied sector activities with Post harvest activities including value addition to the agricultural produce and management of cattle essentially considered in women’s domain should be given due weightage under the scheme.
• Improving market access to women farmers should be a key element under the project. Knowledge dissemination relating to markets, post harvest practices, village level value addition should be indicated.
• Drudgery reduction through use of gender friendly tools and technologies should also be made a key feature of the scheme.
Net increase in the incomes of women in agriculture on a sustainable basis;
(b) Improvement in food and nutritional security of women in agriculture and their families;
(c) Increase in area under cultivation, cropping intensity and food production by women;
(d) Increased levels of skills and performance by women in agriculture;
(e) Increased access of women in agriculture to productive land, inputs, credit, technology and information;
(f) Drudgery reduction for women in agriculture through use of gender friendly tools / technologies;
(g) Increased access to market and market information for better marketing of their products;
(h) Increased soil health and fertility to sustain agriculture based livelihoods;
(i) Increased visibility of women in agriculture as an interest group –in terms of increased number of women institutions and increase in their entrepreneurship.