Bidding adieu to 2016 : 10 best examples of practical solutions from India

Ananta Prasad

December 30th, 2016

With a number of challenges on the field and off the field, the team in India has managed to deliver some good sustainable practical solutions in last couple of years. Moving ahead for an eventful 2017 and with added challenges and milestones, I thought of ending the year with looking back at the sustainable practical solutions we have served so far.

Development is a process as we all know and in Practical Action the biggest learning so far I have got is how to make this process a sustainable one. Here I have documented 10 different projects and interventions which have been sustainable or aiming at sustainability delivering practical solutions.

  1. ACCESS cook stoves

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Access Grameen Mahila Udyog, in Koraput which is nurtured by Practical Action has been instrumental in manufacturing and marketing of improved cook stoves. The cook stoves generate less smoke, save fuel and time.

It has contributed to less carbon emission and has resulted in healthier living environment in rural tribal houses.

2. SOURA RATH (Solar Power Cart)

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Practical Action India developed a portable solar-powered cart (Mobile Solar Energy System) that provides energy for 72 hours to power mobile phones, laptops, lights and water pumps. The cart can serve up to a capacity of 5KW and can be used during the post-disaster emergency and is easy to be relocated from one place to another.

This model is applauded by Government of Odisha and is now being showcased at the Solar Park for public. We strongly feel this can add value to the cyclone shelter houses if used appropriately

3. SUNOLO SAKHI 

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Young girls and women in 60 slums of Bhubaneswar have formed Sakhi Clubs and spreading the knowledge on menstrual hygiene among other girls and peers. Our innovative radio Programme ‘Sunolo Sakhi’ has broken the taboo and enabled a conducive environment for discussion on menstrual hygiene among adolescent girls. The first ever radio show on menstrual hygiene Sunolo Sakhi is instrumental in bringing about change in the menstrual hygiene practices and behaviour of these young girls resulting in better health.

The comprehensive programme Sunolo Sakhi is also providing Audio book for visually challenged and video book for hearing and speech impaired girls in the State.

4.  COMMUNITY GOVERNANCE 

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Community led water management has helped this tribal village Sundertaila in Nayagarh district to be self-sufficient in getting clean drinking water. Not only practical solutions but introducing user friendly and sustainable technology options at the last mile and serving them with basic needs is something what Practical Action tries to invest in its program efforts.

5. SMRE

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18 years old Sunil Tadingi of Badamanjari is now a successful entrepreneur and continues education in Semiliguda College. Despite all odds he is able to mark this achievement as his village is now electrified with the help of a self-sustained micro hydro power generation unit.

Badamanjari has set an example in Koraput district by generating around 40KW electricity to provide light to all the households of the village and people are able to watch TV and use fans as well. Rice hauler and turmeric processing units are also running with additional energy generated, as a result creating entrepreneurs like Sunil.

6. Small wind energy systems (SWES)

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60 poor families in Kalahandi district of Odisha once deprived of access to electricity are electrified now. The wind and solar hybrid system by Practical Action has solved the basic energy need of the villagers with street lights, home lighting and fans.

Kamalaguda and Tijmali, these two villages are on the top of the hills where it was a day dream for getting electricity to fight with the night. Now, the villagers are capacitated to manage the systems by themselves without any external support.

7. PROJECT NIRMAL

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At the backdrop of poor sanitation facilities in small and medium cities of Odisha, ‘Project Nirmal’ supports two fast growing urban hubs like Dhenkanal and Angul municipalities with a pilot intervention for appropriate & sustainable city wide sanitation service.

Project Nirmal aims at benefitting both the municipalities to set up Faecal Sludge Management systems by establishing treatment plants to treat the faecal sludge

8. Safe and Healthy Environment for Children of Waste Workers

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“I felt very happy the moment I received the Identity Card from the Dept. of Labour and Employment, Govt. of Odisha” Says Salima Bibi a 25 year old informal waste worker from a Slum near Dumduma under Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC).

Many informal waste workers in the state are being formalised and now accessing and availing their legitimate citizen rights.

9. LITRE OF LIGHT 

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Light comes from water bottles. Litre of Light is an open source technology which has been successfully experimented in 120 households in the slums of Bhubaneswar. It has now lessened the use of electric light during day time.

Small children can even study and men and women can do delicate cloth weaving and other productive activities during day time with the light provided by these solar water bulbs.

10. Safe and Healthy Environment for Children of Waste Workers
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117 children of informal waste workers have been enrolled in schools in one day and are continuing their schooling; they were engaged in rag picking or related works previously.

While working with alternative energy, Practical Action focuses on advocating and influencing the society for a step ahead towards meaningful development

4 responses to “Bidding adieu to 2016 : 10 best examples of practical solutions from India”

  1. Ed Bourque Says:

    Good post.
    I just wanted to say that I appreciate the conciseness and practicality that some of these projects display. Some solutions are more difficult that others, but often times, people just need a small boost and then they can move forward.

  2. Goutam Aryabhusan Says:

    Excellent piece of compilation Ananta.

  3. Rohini Ravindran Says:

    Very nice concise information on the work done by you.
    Would be interested to know if you have any projects in Maharashtra.. around the Mumbai suburbs.

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