National/ State Rural Livelihood Mission being run as ‘Umeed’ in Jammu and Kashmir has produced path-breaking results in poverty elevation and financial inclusion among the targeted lot and areas.
Focusing on stabilization and promotion of existing livelihoods portfolio of the poor in farm and non-farm sectors, Umeed, an economic development scheme, provides poor families, particularly woman member(s) an opportunity to organise or join Self Help Groups (SHG)s for productive activity and contribute in household income.
In Jammu division alone, 8270 SHGs have been constituted which have so far contributed Rs.16.61 cr as their own thrift.
The Bank accounts have been opened for all the SHGs and the number of households covered has touched 79045. In the run up to involve female members of family 80,071 poor women have been federated into SHGs.
With around 10 SHGs each, 805 Village Organizations (VOs) have been formed across the ten districts of Jammu division.
This has also resulted in constitution of 53 Cluster Level Federations (CLFs), thus producing a chain of economic activities, financing and lending institutions.
The Nationa/State Rural Livelihood Mission (N/SRLM) aims “to reduce poverty in the state by building strong grassroots institutions of the poor, engage them into gainful livelihoods interventions and ensure appreciable improvement in their income on a sustainable basis. The interventions are made to enable every poor household to come out of poverty with immense confidence and belief in them. The objective is to ensure that every poor reaps all the benefits of government schemes as his entitlement which ultimately helps him to live a life full of contentment, happiness and dignity.
The edifice has a defined three tier community structure with the basic level consisting of Self Help Groups comprising 10 -15 women members being homogenous with same socio economic status.
All the members have equal rights and opportunities with thrust on transparency brought through group meetings, good booking keeping system, framing/filing of monthly reports and annual audit reports, and lastly leadership rotation.
At second level is village organization consisting of atleast 10 SHGs which act as mentor and through orientation, training, exposure, information dissemination, on-site support, strengthen the capacity of members of SHGs in bookkeeping, accounting, advocacy, bank-linkage, accessing government schemes.
It also focuses on increased participation of SHG members in Gram Sabha, establishing linkages with PRI and government schemes at village/panchayat level and facilitates SHG Bank linkages through liaison and coordination with bank branches
The third tier – the Cluster Level Federation (CLF) is a federation of all Village Organizations in a cluster.
It supports (capacity building, funds to VOs, SHGs and community cadre; Monitor, support and assess the performance of VOs. Convergence with the various line departments and ensure access to entitlements to members, initiate collective livelihood activities at the CLF level.
In order to make SHGs under UMEED credit worthy all the groups would have their bank accounts opened. Thrust is laid on preparation and maintenance of transparent and well recorded books of accounts.
Intense training is imparted to the book keepers and these book keepers are identified for each and every SHG.