For implementing the convergence model, Kudumbashree NRO has evolved a set of tools for participatory assessment and planning by engaging institutions of the poor (Self-help groups) with the constitutionally mandated local governance system (Panchayati Raj institutions). These tools, which are process oriented in nature, help in developing a strong community cadre and building capacities of local institutions for improving the reach and quality of public service delivery. The tools which are called Participatory Assessment of Entitlement (PAE), Entitlement Access Plan (EAP) and Gram Panchayat Poverty Reduction Plan (GP2RP) are used by the SHG households for understanding and documenting gaps in entitlement access, planning for its access entitlements and undertaking joint consultative activities with Gram Panchayats (GP) for eradicating poverty at the village level. These tools help in generating a collective energy and a conducive atmosphere for the PRI and CBO to work together for village development. At the same time the entire process capacitates the local institutions to meet the development needs of the village.
Participatory Assessment of Entitlements (PAE)
Participatory Assessment of Entitlements (PAE) is an SHG level discussion module. PAE was developed with the primary objective of getting inputs to two components of the NRLM results framework – governance processes and household benefits. Therefore, PAE includes components on
• Gram sabha meetings
• Household benefits
PAE is also an initiative aimed at sensitisation of SHG members on entitlements and benefits. PAE also works as a means of formulating a baseline and as a tool for information sharing among SHG members. Discussions are facilitated by LRG members under the guidance of mentor resource persons. All SHGs in pilot areas are covered through PAE.
Objectives of PAE
• Sensitisation on and mobilisation for gram sabha and schemes
• Data collection for assessment of project progress
• Developing materials for planning for future activities
• Strengthening of LRG and Village Organisation (VO)
• Identification of active women from the SHG network
Outcomes of PAE
• Sensitisation and mobilisation of SHG members for strengthening planning and implementation of schemes through active participation in gram sabha
• Base line data for assessment of project progress
• Capacity building of LRG members
• Strengthening of SHGs and their federations
• Strengthening the linkage between CBOs and GPs
• Sensitisation of GP to demand for development and social security schemes among poor women and their families
The PAE Process
1. Training of LRG members at block level
NRO orients the LRGs on the concept and process of PAE. PAE module and processes are explained to LRGs.
2. Conduct of PAE in SHG meetings
LRG takes the lead in conducting PAE meetings at SHGs. PAE is always done either during regular SHG meetings; if this is not possible, it is held as per the convenience of the SHG members. Mentors support LRGs in the first couple of meetings in a block. Typically, a PAE meeting takes about 90 minutes.
3. Consolidation of PAE data at VO level
Once all the SHGs in a VO complete their PAE meetings, data is consolidated and presented at the VO level. It is VO members who consolidate present the results, with support and guidance from LRG. Ward members are also invited to the meetings. The consolidated data of all SHGs in a VO provides a picture of the extent to which women are able to access entitlements. The document forms the basis for collective action with the GP.
4. Consolidation of PAE data at GP level
After the completion of data consolidation in all the VOs in a GP, VO status documents are compiled at the GP level. Representatives from all the VOs in the GP attend the meeting. President and members of the GP are invited to the meeting. GP level consolidated PAE report is a direct input to the GP; it also works as the starting point for the GP and the VO to discuss the possibilities of working together.
5. Action plan preparation by VO based on PAE results and demand from SHG
VOs prepare action plans based on the consolidated SHG level PAEs.
6. Consultative meetings of VO and GP to integrate VO action plan into the GP plan
VOs and GPs work together to integrate the VO action plan into the gram panchayat level development plan.
7. Implementation plan to be developed laying down course of action for the next one year, mentioning specific roles of GP and VO in each activity. Annual implementation plan is worked out at this stage.
Entitlement Access Plan (EAP)
EAP is a Target Plan that each Village Organisation (VO) prepares for addressing the gaps in accessing entitlements identified during the Participatory Assessment of Entitlements (PAE). Using the information collected through PAE as baseline, each VO sets quarterly plans for different schemes. Once set, VO monitors and evaluates these targets on a regular basis.
EAP is prepared through discussions on the ways in which different schemes could be used for improving the state of poor households. A story ('Roshni') is used for facilitating the discussions.
Outcomes of EAP
• Consolidated Target Demand for different schemes
• Sensitisation of the community on the benefits of schemes
• Ownership of the community network in ensuring access to entitlements
• Support to PRI from CBO in enhancing the outreach of social welfare schemes
• Capacitation of PRI and CBO on plan preparation and implementation of schemes
The entitlement demand identified through participatory exercises is taken up with Gram Panchayat and appropriate line departments. The progress is monitored at regular intervals. The CBO functions here as a facilitator for ensuring basic entitlements of the community. The CBO engages in consultations with the PRI and the line departments for presenting the status of entitlement access of the member households to them. The CBO also presents the demand for entitlements in consolidated form through consultations. The PAE and EAP are presented then to the Gram Sabha for approval. CBO forms sub committees for different schemes as part of the preparations for the process. The VO sub committees are strengthened through training and awareness programmes. Each SHG identifies volunteers to work on different schemes. Institutionalisation of the consultative platform between CBOs and PRIs evolve through the process. Active involvement of the CBO in the local demand generation and entitlement access plans adds to their capacities. Their engagement with the processes offers crucial support to the PRIs while exerts pressure for transparency and inclusion in scheme implementation. Participatory planning exercises offer a platform for PRIs and CBOs to engage with each other on a regular basis.
Gram Panchayat Poverty Reduction Plan (GP2RP)
Gram Panchayat Poverty Reduction Plan (GP2RP) is the consolidated demand plan for local development prepared by the community network in partnership with respective Gram Panchayat. GP2RP has emerged as an important tool for PRI-CBO Convergence under the National Rural Livelihoods Mission (NRLM).
• To prepare comprehensive and inclusive demand plans for local development under the leadership of the community network in consultation with local governments.
• To strengthen the community based organisations and their leadership for active participation in poverty reduction activities.
• To facilitate the development of organic interface between the federations of Self-Help Groups (SHGs) and Panchayat Raj Institutions (PRIs) for the socioeconomic development of the villages through appropriate mechanisms.
GP2RP is prepared by the SHGs, consolidating the demands for livelihoods, health and sanitation, social security, natural resource management, and basic infrastructure development expressed by poor families. It has an element of inclusion as well, wherein attempts are made to bring in households that are left out into the SHG fold.
|Social Inclusion Plan||Plan for inclusion of vulnerable people / households into SHGs under NRLM|
|Entitlement Plan||Consolidated demand for entitlements based on Participatory Assessment of Entitlements (PAE)|
|Livelihoods Plan||Specific demands for livelihood enhancement through agriculture, animal husbandry, skill training etc.|
|Credit Plan||Demand for financial services under NRLM and bank linkage|
|Infrastructure Development Plan||Demand for new infrastructure and renovation of existing infrastructure|
|Resource Development Plan||Demand for protection and development of natural resources|
Outcome of the participatory planning exercises
At the end of the above participatory planning exercises, a comprehensive plan- GP2RP is prepared which is then submitted to the Gram Panchayat. It is then discussed during gram sabha and necessary components are then added to the Gram Panchayat Development Plan. To strengthen and institutionalize the interaction between Panchayati Raj Institutions and Community Based Organizations, Kudumbashree NRO forms Gram Panchayat Coordination Committee (GPCC), an institutional platform set up at the Gram Panchayat level for better coordination between PRI and CBO in matters related to planning and service delivery.