Nirdhan as its first activity towards relief of the poor i.e. towards its charitable activities has launched since its incorporation, its Poultry Development Services i.e. The Nirdhan Livelihood Development Project in August 2011. This project started by focusing on teaching home-farmers and their family members skill sets to engage in enterprises which will generate additional income needed to lift them out of poverty. We spent much of our time six months before August 2011 conducting research in 24 North Parganas District of West Bengal on enterprises that are market-driven rather than production-driven and that home-farmers could feasibly switch to.
After conducting financial and management due diligence, Nirdhan teamed up with BASIX/Indian Grameen Services (“IGS”) which is BASIX’s Section 25 Company for Research, Development and Implementation of livelihood programmes in August 2011 to initiate our first pilot livelihood model in poultry farming. The BASIX and Nirdhan teams drew up a three phase plan for a one year period to conduct feasibility research at our chosen site in West Bengal, to enrol 30 households in a pilot, to scale the project to 3,000 home-farmers by the end of the first year and to train the Nirdhan India team to take over the management and implementation of the project at the end of the first year in May 2012.
Nirdhan is going alone since year 2013 and handling the operations successfully adding meaningful impact into the lives of the poorest of the poor families. Our PDS gives families the skills to engage in poultry farming and radically improve their power to earn.
- Launched in August 2011 in rural locations of West Bengal. Today we work in 4 locations (Familia, Babnan, Sundia and Kolaghat) all within 30-40 miles of Kolkata.
- Currently we work with over 6,000 very poor families i.e. training approximately 30,000 people.
- We train whole families so that the men, women, grandparents and children are all involved and empowered.
- Training (by Nirdhan) is given in backyard poultry farming so that the home-farmers and their families know how to raise, look after and sell their chickens and /or eggs.
- Poultry toolkits are supplied at a subsidized rate; home-farmers pay Rs.450 but they cost us Rs.1500. Each toolkit comprises of 10 one-day-old chicks, vaccinations, initial feed, medication and most importantly the training.
- It is mainly the women who take ultimate responsibility for the toolkit.
- Sale of poultry products is increasing annual household income of home-farmers by up to 30%.
- Profits enable families to send their children to school, build a toilet or start a second enterprise.